West Bengal holds the first phase of the Lok Sabha election in 14 of its 42 seats in the northern and western region Thursday with the ruling Left Front facing a tough challenge from the newly established Congress-Trinamool Congress alliance.
Over 16 million voters will be eligible to choose their nominees in the Lok Sabha from among 134 candidates, with the Congress taking on the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) led Left Front, which has had 32 years of uninterrupted rule in the state, in most of the seats.
The first of the 3-phase polling will include most sensitive areas where threats of violence are real. Maoists have given a call for poll boycott.
Gautam Gupta has more on the story.