Dec. 23: CPM leaders in Hooghly have accused Trinamul workers of assaulting several Left supporters who had attended Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee’s rally in Chinsurah yesterday.
The allegations of assaulting the CPM supporters across the district came on a day a Trinamul activist was arrested in Calcutta for being in a group that pelted a Biman Bose-led Left rally with stones near Chiria More yesterday.
The assaults and the arrest have prompted the CPM leadership to term the incidents an attempt by Trinamul “to throttle the voice of the Opposition”. Sources said the Left party had decided to raise the issue in rallies leading up to the Lok Sabha polls, due in May.
Trinamul has denied all the charges levelled against its workers in connection with the attacks, both in Hooghly and in Calcutta.
Within hours of the Bhattacharjee rally yesterday, three CPM supporters returning from the meeting venue were attacked with sticks by suspected Trinamul workers in Hooghly’s Simlapal. All three had to given stitches in their heads.
In another Hooghly village, Narayan Hazra, a 50-year-old CPM local committee member who runs a small hotel, was attacked in his sleep around 10pm.
“Over a dozen local Trinamul workers started beating me up with sticks when I was sleeping in my hotel. I was jolted out of sleep. They then asked me the reason for participating in Buddhababu’s rally. When I told them that I was a party member, they again thrashed me. One of them threw a chair at me. It hit me in the head. As I fell to the ground, they broke the cash box and fled with Rs 7,000,” Hazra said.
The trader said he did not lodge police complaint fearing more attacks. “I am acquainted with the faces. But I want to lead a peaceful life,” he added.
Another gang of suspected Trinamul youths assaulted Amiya Bag, a farmer and CPM committee member in Arambagh. He, too, didn’t lodge a complaint.
The Left Front today condemned the assaults on CPM workers.
“Trinamul has exposed its true colours by assaulting our party activists in Hooghly for attending Buddhada’s rally. Let the people now realise what condition is prevailing in the state and where people’s democratic rights are being taken to,” CPM state secretariat member Mohammad Salim said.
He added that episodes of “Trinamul terror” would be highlighted in the rallies the CPM would organise before the Lok Sabha polls.
The Left Front has decided to take out a protest rally tomorrow evening in Calcutta.
Trinamul leaders denied their involvement in the attacks. “Those who had attacked the CPM cadres for attending yesterday’s rally do not belong to our party. We don’t believe in political vendetta. Those involved in the attack might be rebel members of the CPM,” said Swapan Nandy, the Arambagh block Trinamul president.