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After loyalty switch, terror slur on CPM

Balurghat, Dec. 12: A family from a village in Gangarampur has approached the additional police superintendent of South Dinajpur for protection after the CPM allegedly threatened him following his switch to the Trinamul Congress.

Firoz Mondol had left the CPM and joined Trinamul on November 25. “From then on, we are being hounded by armed CPM supporters. Even his friends are not being spared,” said Osman Mondol, Feroz’s uncle and a resident of Keshabpur village, 50km from here. “Feroz is scared and has fled. We don’t know where he is.”

Uttam Sarkar, a Trinamul member had accompanied Osman to meet Imran Wahab, the additional police superintendent.

“I and another of our party member, Swapan Sarkar, were called out of our homes on December 7. It was 9pm and Amal Kujur, a CPM gram panchayat member who was very close to Firoz, took us to a deserted field. He took out guns and told us that if Firoz did not return (to the CPM), we would be killed,” Uttam alleged.

Ever since Firoz switched allegiance, several ponds in the village — including the ones belonging to Kujur — had been poisoned leading to the death of fish. “The local CPM put the blame on Firoz and began looking for the 22-year-old. We had filed an FIR with the Gangarampur police station against Kujur and three others but the police told us to settle the matter among ourselves,” Uttam said. “That is why we turned to the additional police superintendent.”

The inspector-in-charge of the Gangarampur police station, Biswanath Haldar, said both parties had filed complaints against each other. “No one told them to settle the matter themselves, we are investigating the case,” Haldar said.

Wahab said the Gangarampur police had been asked to look into the allegations and report back to him.

Kujur has denied the charges. “This is a political ploy of Trinamul. Firoz and Uttam have been putting poison in the ponds and we have filed a police complaint naming them,” Kujur said.

The South Dinajpur district president of Trinamul, Biplab Mitra, who is a resident of Gangarampur, said the CPM was intimidating opposition parties in the area. “When its own men are coming and joining us because of its partisan manner of functioning, the leaders cannot take it and resort to terror tactics,” Mitra alleged.

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