Left Menu
Development News Edition

TMC behind violence in Bengal, EC 'mute spectator' to poll code violations: Amit Shah

PTI | New Delhi | Updated: 15-05-2019 21:39 IST | Created: 15-05-2019 19:07 IST
TMC behind violence in Bengal, EC 'mute spectator' to poll code violations: Amit Shah
Image Credit: Twitter (@AmitShah)

BJP chief Amit Shah Wednesday blamed West Bengal's ruling Trinamool Congress for violence during his roadshow in Kolkata and accused the Election Commission of "double standards" for remaining a "mute spectator" to rigging and violation of the poll code in the state. He rejected TMC's allegation that BJP workers vandalised a bust of educationist and social reformer Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar, claiming the regional party was behind it.

The countdown to Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's days in power will begin on May 23, when general election results will be declared, Shah warned. At a press conference a day after the violence, he said it would have been difficult for him to survive the attack on his convoy but for the security provided by the CRPF, a central police force.

"I want to tell the Election Commission that it has become a mute spectator to attempts to rig polls in West Bengal. It should immediately intervene. History-sheeters...are arrested during elections across the country. In Bengal, they are released after furnishing a bond. What is this double standard from the EC? Why is it silent," he asked. Shah said election observers in their reports have said polls in the state cannot be conducted fairly till such miscreants are arrested but the EC did not act. It raises a lot of questions on the election watchdog's impartiality, he said.

BJP and TMC supporters clashed on the streets of Kolkata on Tuesday, during a massive roadshow of Shah who had to cut short the event mid-way due to the violence. The violence apparently began after suspected TMC supporters hurled stones at the BJP convoy from inside the hostel of Vidyasagar College. Furious BJP workers retaliated and during the clash, a bust of the polymath and philosopher inside the campus was damaged.

The election in West Bengal has been marred by incidents of violence and targeted attacks on rival party candidates. Hitting back at TMC's charge that the BJP was behind the violence, Shah said his party has been contesting elections in every state and is in power in 16, but it is only in West Bengal that violence is being seen.

Shah said Banerjee has issued threats in her speeches but has not been barred from campaigning, alleging that democracy is being throttled in the state. There is violence in Bengal because the TMC is in power there, he said.

Asked if the BJP would demand Centre's intervention and the imposition of President's rule in Bengal, Shah said there's no need for this as people have made up their mind to oust Banerjee. In a separate press conference, Trinamool Congress released videos to claim that "BJP goons" damaged the statue of Vidyasagar and accused the saffron party of violence.

Shah, in turn, accused TMC "goons" of vandalising the bust, saying it was done to gain "sympathy" as the Banerjee-led party has realised its "reverse count" has begun. He too showed pictures of Tuesday's violence to blame the TMC. "If she has nothing to hide, I will ask Mamata Ji to seek a probe by a neutral agency, by an SIT (special investigation team) constituted by the Kolkata High Court or the Supreme Court," he said.

Kolkata was rife with rumours since Tuesday morning that people were inside the college and will instigate riots but police did not act, he said. BJP leaders and workers were on the road outside the campus and its gates remained closed even during the violence, he said, adding that his party's supporters could not have gone inside to desecrate the statue situation far inside a room.

"All evidence indicates that TMC goons were behind it. The TMC has done this to turn around a losing battle. It has lost in all six phases so far. For vote bank politics, the statue of a famous educationist was damaged. The countdown of the TMC rule has begun" Shah said. The BJP will win more than 23 of the state's 42 seats, he reiterated, claiming that his roadshow attracted "unprecedented" support as more than 2.5 lakh people joined it, rattling the TMC.

Taking a dig at Banerjee, he said she may be older than him but he has more experience of elections, and that her party allegedly indulging in violence will only result in a bigger BJP victory. To a question about FIRs registered against him in Bengal, he said it will not scare BJP workers and they will fight the polls with more determination and passion.

Noting that violence had also marred panchayat polls in the state last year, during which over 60 opposition workers were killed, Shah attacked non-TMC opposition parties for not speaking up. He said their aim is not to save democracy but to remove Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

To another question, he said he did not hope for any action from the EC now as it had not acted on the BJP's demand for re-polls so far during six phases.



‘Discounted Deaths’ and COVID 19: Anthropology of Death and Emotions

Death is a social event rather than the mere cessation of biological functions. As seen by anthropologists, death is not just physical but intensely social, cultural, and political....

Indigenous knowledge of communities a must for maximizing impact of community work

Generally, it has been observed that the majority of the academicians in higher education institutions neglect the wisdom of community people and throw their weight around thinking that they know everything and the community knows nothing. ...

In rebuking FBR, Pakistan’s courts take a stand for public health

The system, if implemented effectively, will allow Pakistans revenue service to combat the illicit trade in tobacco products and potentially add hundreds of millions of dollars to the states budget each year. ...

Dissecting how COVID-19 is catalyzing the trajectory of New World Order

The ensuing pandemic of COVID-19 has hit the globalization in two ways firstly, shrinking the importance of globalization as an economic force by curtailing mobility through worldwide lockdowns, and secondly, rejuvenating the idea of indig...


Latest News

Holistic solution required for world to recover from COVID-19 pandemic: Pak PM

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday said the world cannot recover from the coronavirus pandemic until all the nations come together to find a holistic solution to the deadly disease. Addressing a high-level virtual event of the U...

OWL viewership doubles for May Melee event

The Overwatch Leagues May Melee events last weekend attracted twice the number of viewers than did the Week 15 competition. The league said Week 16 May 22-24 saw an average of 63,000 people watching the online broadcast per minute, more tha...

U.S. may now need to treat Hong Kong like China -White House adviser

U.S. President Donald Trumps top economic adviser said on Thursday that Hong Kong may now need to be treated like China when it comes to trade and other financial matters, given Beijings move to enact a new law Washington warns would underm...

Bihar reports 16th COVID-19 casualty; number of cases rises to 3,185

The COVID-19 death toll in Bihar rose to 16 on Thursday with the sample of a migrant worker, who died in Bhojpur district three days ago upon returning from Maharashtra, coming positive, an official said. The number of confirmed cases in th...

Give Feedback