A dismayed Trinamool Congress asked the Election Commission "if Emergency has been declared" in the state on BJP’s demand for deployment of central forces in West Bengal till the Model Code of Conduct is in place.

A delegation of opposition leaders met the poll body demanding verification of VVPAT slips of randomly-selected polling stations before May 23rd, the day the votes will be counted.

TMC's national spokesperson and Rajya Sabha member Derek O'Brien raised the issue of the central forces with the Election Commission and put forth his demand that the poll body take action

"BJP's minister announced that central forces will be in Bengal for one week more. Has Emergency been declared by the BJP in Bengal? BJP-RSS members disguised as central forces are torturing citizens. Why special rules for Bengal. This is unacceptable," Mr. O'Brien was quoted to have told the EC.

While addressing a press conference on May 19th, Defence Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman alleged that the BJP was concerned that voters were being intimidated and genuine voters were not being allowed to cast their votes.

She added that to address these issues, BJP has demanded that the central security forces be deployed in the state until the Model Code of Conduct is in force.

According to some sources, some central forces will have normally stay in the state till the counting of votes on May 23rd. The MCC is applicable till May 25th.