In unabated violence, two persons were shot dead and four injured on Thursday in clashes between two rival groups in West Bengal’s Bhatpara, around 30 km from Kolkata. The groups attacked each other with crude bombs and fire arms prompting the police to resort to firing to control the situation. The clashes erupted in the morning and the roads turned empty in no time and shopkeepers quickly downed their shutters.
One of those who died was identified as Rambabu Shau, a street vendor, who was hit by a bullet on his head, reports said. BJP general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya blamed the Trinamool Congress government in the state and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for the clashes. “Mamata Banerjee has lost her mental balance since the Lok Sabha elections. Clashes are taking place all over the state. I have got information that two people fell to police bullets,” he said.
Vijayvargiya said a BJP delegation would visit Bhatpara and meet the family members of the deceased,” he said.
Barrackpore BJP lawmaker Arjun Singh blamed the police for the deaths and the failure to restore law and order in the area. “The man was killed by police bullets. Which police manual directs the police to fire at someone’s head?” Singh said. Mamata convened a meeting with top officials of her government to discuss the situation in Bhatpara where Rapid Action Force and Quick Response Teams were deployed to bring the situation on the control.
Trinamool Congress leader Madan Mitra blamed Arjun Singh and his supporters for the violence. “Arjun Singh and his followers are indulging in politics of violence. If the situation does not improve in 24 hours, the toughest measures need to be adopted,” said Mitra who had unsuccessfully contested the Assembly by-polls in Bhatpara last month.
Bhatpara has become a turf of competition between Trinamool and BJP after four-time Trinamool legislator Arjun Singh joined BJP before the recent parliamentary polls and defeated the state’s ruling party candidate in the Barrackpore Lok Sabha constituency.