TMC, BJP play blame game
After the violence during BJP party president Amit Shah's roadshow in Kolkata on Tuesday, it was the battle of press conferences in Delhi on Wednesday. Both BJP and Trinamool furnished proof that it was the other who was responsible for the vandalism witnessed during the roadshow, including the desecration of Bengali icon Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar's bust kept inside Vidyasagar College in the city.
Shah, who addressed the media at the BJP headquarters in Delhi, presented photographs that showed the college gate locked, and hence argued it was impossible for BJP partyworkers to enter the premises and vandalise Vidyasagar's bust.
"See the intact gate of Vidyasagar college. Then who went inside? It was TMC that was engaging in arson and stone pelting. Vidyasagar's bust was inside a room. This incident happened at 7:30 pm when the college was shut. Who opened the room? Who had the keys? Trinamool - which has administrative control of the college," Shah accused.
Shah alleged TMC goons had vandalised the bust in order to turn around its certain electoral defeat at the hands of the BJP, and urged the media to highlight "this dance of violence" in the state of West Bengal.
BJP held a demonstration at Delhi's Jantar Mantar on Wednesday against the violence at Shah's roadshow. Union Ministers Nirmala Sitharaman, Vijay Goel and Dr Harsh Vardhan sat at the venue with their fingers on their lips, as a mark of silent protest.
A complaint, meanwhile, was filed by a student of Vidyasagar college in Kolkata, alleging BJP's hand behind Tuesday's violence. The student also accused Shah of inciting the mobs.
In Delhi, the Trinamool came forward with its own evidence of how it was the BJP that had allegedly instigated the violence outside the college and then desecrated Ishwarchandra Vidyasagar's bust.
TMC MP Derek O'Brien furnished videos, which showed some persons banging the gate of Vidyasagar college, who, he said, later jumped over to enter the college premises. Trinamool alleged these were BJP partyworkers who had come from outside Bengal to incite violence.
O'Brien alleged that the vandals were crying "Vidyasagar shesh (Vidyasagar finished), how's the josh?" when breaking the bust. The TMC alleged that central forces were collaborating with the BJP on the ground.