The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Mamata brush with Biswas

Polba, April 28: On their way today to the public rallies in Hooghly for the panchayat polls, the convoys of the CPM and the Trinamul Congress took the same road, triggering tension in this locality.

CPM state secretary Anil Biswas’ convoy went past that of Trinamul chief Mamata Banerjee at Sagandhya More down Delhi Road this afternoon.

Minutes later, several agitated Trinamul workers got down from their cars to protest against CPM activists. Though district officials were tightlipped, Mamata alleged it was the CPM’s “deliberate attempt” to heckle her.

“How could the administration allow the CPM leader’s convoy on the route that I took to reach the meeting ground'” she said. The CPM, she alleged, had connived with the district administration to “make an attempt on my life”.

Mamata once again threatened to approach the deputy Prime Minister. “I must bring this matter to the notice of deputy Prime Minister L.K. Advani,” she said. The CPM was desperate to “finish off” the Opposition by unleashing terror on them, she alleged.

CPM’s Bansberia MLA Asutosh Mukherjee said the police had to make way for Biswas’ convoy as he was in a hurry to address a rally at Pandua, over 40 km from Polba. “We have heard about Trinamul’s allegation, but the issue is being blown out of proportion,” he said.

Later, Trinamul leaders lodged a complaint with the Polba police station. They said the situation could have flared up if “we did not keep our party activists under control”.

“The district administration has to be blamed for the mess,” said local party leader Rabin Mukherjee.

District superintendent of police Ajoy Kumar denied any knowledge about the incident. “But we must definitely get the matter looked into if complaints are lodged,” he said.

Trinamul MP Akbar Ali Khondokar, who was in Mamata’s car along with state BJP chief Tathagata Roy, said a team of party leaders would call on Kumar to draw his attention to the incident. “Besides, we shall also launch a statewide agitation to highlight the administration’s callousness,” he said.

At the rallies, while Mamata justified her demand for Central rule in the state, Biswas urged the people not to lend an ear to her.

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