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Shooters fight, but not for medals!

Mampi Das

Calcutta: The internal squabbling of North Calcutta Rifle Club (NCRC) came out in the open, after Mampi Das, the 17-year-old shooter, alleged that she was “pushed and shoved” by fellow shooters at the behest of former India shooter Kuheli Ganguly.

Trouble was brewing at the club for quite some time now.

Mampi broke the protocol and sent her name for the Nationals to be held in New Delhi through West Bengal Rifle Association. This wasn’t to NCRC’s liking and when Mampi was asked “she flaunted her connections.”

All hell broke loose on Monday morning after Mampi came and asked young shooter Kaushalya Mondal to move from her favourite lane at the range. Kaushalya, who stays at Kuheli’s house, refused. “This infuriated Mampi and her mother (Lakshmi), both of whom attacked the girl. She retaliated in defence and a brawl ensued. They could have killed Kaushalya,” Kuheli alleged.

Mampi though had a different story to tell. She alleged that for quite sometime, the NCRC and its shooters were after her. “On Sunday, my mom was threatened… And today, when I went to the club, they kicked my rifle. How can I keep my cool when someone kicks my equipment? I suffered a back injury and my mom was also heckled. It’s a conspiracy against me,” she alleged.

Mampi said she did not break the protocol by bypassing the NCRC while sending her entry for the Nationals. “I sent it through the state body (West Bengal Rifle Association) and it had the official stamp and signature of secretary Debkumar Samanta,” the shooter, who will be participating in 10 metre air rifle and 50-metre prone said. “Hope my back injury is not serious,” she said.

A silver medallist in Asian Championship in Doha last year, Mampi alleged that her fellow shooters were jealous that she is the only one from Bengal in the national camp.

“They want to upset her preparations for the Nationals,” mother Lakshmi said.

Dipen Ganguly, the joint secretary of the club, said Mampi has a problem with her attitude. “She throws her weight around and bullies young shooters… Kaushalya is a domestic help. So she got upset that someone like Kaushalya was using her lane. That’s very unbecoming of her,” Ganguly said.

Ganguly said that the NCRC had an emergent meeting and would take strict action against Mampi. “She had three years of entry fees in arrears… What about that?” he said.

Both the groups lodged a complaint at the Ultadanga Police Station. “We have received complaints and will probe into the matter,” police sources said.