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Monday, May 29, 2023

BJP worker Saikat Bhawal lynched to death during party’s door-to-door campaign in WB

A BJP worker, Saikat Bhawal, was beaten to death and six others were injured when a group of people attacked them during a door to door campaign of the party in West Bengal’s North 24 Parganas district on Saturday.

By the time Saikat was taken to a hospital, doctors declared him “brought dead”. Six other people who were injured in the attack that took place in ward number six of the Halisahar Municipality were admitted to hospital.

BJP worker Saikat Bhawal was murdered during a door-to-door campaign

Barrackpore BJP MP Arjun Singh alleged that goons sheltered by the Trinamool Congress killed Bhawal but the ruling party denied the charge.

BJP state unit said that the party activists were attacked when they were engaged in the “Griha Sampark Abhiyan”, a public outreach programme which is part of the saffron party’s “Aar Noi Annay” (No More Injustice) campaign launched in the run up to the state Assembly election due in April-May 2021.

TMC MLA of Naihati, Partha Bhowmik, trotted out the usual deflecting statement given by the ruling party whenever it’s workers are accused of violence, claiming that Bhawal’s death is the result of an ‘old dispute’ between two groups of the locality and the BJP is ‘unnecessarily politicising’ the incident.

Joint Commissioner of Barrackpore Police Commissionerate, Ajay Thakur, said that two persons were detained in this connection with the incident and are being interrogated.

A few days back, a BJP convoy which included national president JP Nadda and other top leaders was attacked with bricks as it was passing through Diamond Harbour to address a party worker’s meeting in South 24 Parganas. After that attack, Union Home Ministry summoned the state Director General of Police (DGP) and chief secretary on the prevailing law and order situation in the state. Later, three senior IPS officers of West Bengal, who were responsible for BJP chief J P Nadda’s security, have been asked to serve in the central deputation.

Bengal govt has however, defying the MHA summons, refused to send the state’s chief secretary and DGP.

Dozens of BJP workers have been killed in West Bengal this year, a trend which intensified since the shambolic 2018 Panchayat elections where TMC won a good chunk of seats ‘unopposed’ due to the terror campaign unleashed by it. The chilling murders of Trilochan Mahato (20) and Dulal Kumar (30), who were hung publicly like used to be done by Islamic invaders or colonial British to terrorise the natives, is the abiding memory of those 2018 elections. Judiciary and other constitutional bodies all failed to intervene effectively, which has only emboldened the ruling party as it grows increasingly desperate to cling on to power in the upcoming elections.

Here are the names of some of the BJP workers killed this year: Saikat Bhawal, Ulen Roy, Swaroop Som, Bijoy Sil, Birendra Shaw, Rabindranath Mandal, Manish Shukla (councillor), Madan Ghorai  (allegedly killed in judicial custody), Ganesh Roy, Rabin Paul, Dipak Mondal, Anup Roy (allegedly killed in police custody), Sudarshan Pramanik, Sheikh Liaquat, Bapi Ghosh, Debendra Nath Roy (MLA), a BJP booth president’s 16-year-old sister was raped and killed, Purna Chandra Das (booth president), Bapi Ghosh (worker), Shakuntala Haldar (panchayat candidate) and her husband Chandra Haldar.

One hopes that this latest murder, coming as it does just after the WB government has defied MHA summons, leads to some concrete action by the Union Government. HinduPost has long maintained that free and fair elections in West Bengal can only be conducted under President’s Rule.

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