Bhatpara Tense Again Over Left-Congress Peace Rally


Bhatpara: Tension again built up in West Bengal’s Bhatpara after a commotion broke out between police and the Left-Congress activists centring on a peace rally in the area on Tuesday. Bhatpara has been in news due to large-scale political violence for the last one month.

State’s Left and Congress leaders on Tuesday organised a peace rally in North 24 Parganas district’s Bhatpara area on Tuesday afternoon, but the police stopped the rally stating prohibitory orders under Section 144 were in place in the area.

Rallyists led by Left Front Chairman Biman Bose, CPI-M state general secretary Surjya Kanta Misra and West Bengal Congress President Somen Mitra, broke the barricades and clashed with the police and Rapid Action Force (RAF) personnel in the area as the Ghoshpara Road turned into a battle ground.

Many senior leaders from both parties were seen arguing with the Barrackpore Police Commissioner Manoj Kumar Verma for allowing them to move forward. “How will peace return if the Trinamool Congress government stops peace rallies like this? They have failed to bring back peace in the area. We are holding this rally for peace and harmony. That’s our only demand. There are no political flags or banners in the rally,” Left Front Chairman Bose said.
“It seems police do not want peace to be back in the area. They should have encouraged the people to conduct such rallies. They should have encouraged the rally,” state Congress chief Somen Mitra said.

Bhatpara and its adjoining Kankinara, Jagaddal, Naihati area under the Barrackpore parliamentary constituency have been on the boil since the general election results on May 23.

Former Trinamool MLA from Bhatpara Arjun Singh, who defected to the BJP just before the 2019 polls, won the Barrackpore Lok Sabha seat while his son Pawan Singh won the Assembly by-election from Bhatpara.

A fresh flare-up in the area on June 20 left two persons dead at least four others injured when the police had to open fire on Thursday, prompting the administration to impose prohibitory orders in the affected areas.