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West Bengal bandh: Normal life hit, BJP calls shutdown huge ‘success’

Anish Mondal
The BJP has also announced a protests across all 23 districts in the state today. (Source: BJP Twitter)

The 12-hour shutdown called by the West Bengal unit of Bharatiya Janata Party (WB) in protest against the alleged attack on party MP and strongman Arjun Singh has had a moderate impact in the Barrackpore industrial area. Normal life was hit as most people didn’t leave their home in panic. Roads remained largely empty and a large number of vehicles including trucks and lorries have lined up on the road due to the blockade on the Kalyani expressway. The saffron party has termed the ongoing shutdown in the state as success.

In a tweet, party leader and former Union Minister Mukul Roy said, "12-hour bandh (strike) called in Barrackpore to protest deadly attack on MP Shri Arjun Singh. I am grateful to see the overwhelming support for strike by the people of Barrackpore."

The party called for a 12-hour shutdown from 6 am to 6 pm to protest against the Mamata Banerjee-led government’s inaction against Trinamool Congress workers who reportedly attacked party’s Barrackpore MP Arjun Singh on Sunday and Medinipur MP Dilip Ghosh on Friday.

The activists of the saffron party have put up blockades at several point on roads and on railway tracks. The shops, business houses and educational institutions remained closed. The ferry services between North 24 parganas’ Naihati and Hooghly’s Chinsurah also remained affected as few BJP workers held demonstration at the jetties.

A fresh brawl took place at Lakuthi area and Barackpore-Barasat Road between police and BJP workers after the latter tried to break barricades and proceed further. The scuffle also took place at Kakinara- Barrackpore area, Subhashnagar colony and Shyamnagar between ruling TMC and BJP. The train services were also disrupted at Sealdah-Ranaghat section. Several trains such as Darjeeling Mail, Patna- Kolkata express arrived late due to the strike.

The BJP has also announced a protests across all 23 districts in the state today. The party has also said that it will gherao the office of Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP), South Suburban (Kolkata) over the complete "collapse" of the law and order in the state. In other districts, the party will gherao the offices of Superintendent of Police (SP).

On Sunday, BJP’s Barrackpore MP Arjun Singh had suffered a head injury when police resorted to a baton-charge in Kakinara area to foil an attempt by BJP workers to block a road. This led to a scuffle between the Trinamool Congress workers and the BJP.

Meanwhile, Governor Jagdeep Dhankar met BJP MP Arjun Singh who is currently admitted at Apollo hospital in Kolkata.

On Friday, state BJP chief Dilip Ghosh was also allegedly assaulted by a group of TMC workers at Lake Town area when he was out for morning walk and on the way to take part in ‘Chai Pe Charcha’ event. The ongoing political violence has spiked in the state since the commencement of the Lok Sabha polls earlier this year.