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Another family levels murder charge
- Allegation of police inaction despite FIR 4 years ago

Zarina Biwi breaks down in front of Opposition leader Surjya Kanta Mishra at Labhpur in Birbhum on Tuesday — the day Jamal Sheikh, the youngest of the five surviving sons of 80-year-old Zarina, came home after four years in hiding in Murshidabad. Picture by Indrajit Roy

Labhpur, July 15: A Birbhum family today told CPM leader Surjya Kanta Mishra that they had named Trinamul MLA Manirul Islam in an FIR on the murder of a member in 2010 but no action had yet been taken against him.

Reksona Khatun and her mother Ujala, who came to meet Mishra at the Labhpur home of Zarina Biwi, whose three sons were killed during a meeting called by Manirul, alleged that Trinamul activists loyal to the MLA had hounded them out of their home.

Reksona, in the murder FIR of whose uncle Manirul is named, told Mishra during the CPM leader’s visit to Zarina’s home: “We have been hounded out of our homes and are running for our lives.”

Reksona’s father Thandu Sheikh, a CPM worker, was murdered in January 2010. His family had filed an FIR against some Trinamul workers said to be close to Manirul. A few days later, Thandu’s brother-in-law Rezaul Sheikh, the prime witness in the murder case, was killed. Manirul is named in the FIR related to Rezaul’s murder.

The family alleged that no chargesheet had been filed although four years have passed since the murders.

Birbhum superintendent of police Alok Rajoria said he was not aware of the two cases. “Let me check,” he said.

Personnel at Labhpur police station, where the FIRs had been filed, said the chargesheet had not been filed because of “political pressure”.

Manirul disconnected the call when this correspondent introduced himself tonight.

Reksona said she and her mother Ujala and brother had been forced to leave their home in Kazipara, a village in Labhpur block, after Thandu’s murder because of “intimidation” by Manirul’s associates, an allegation made by Zarina and her family too.

Manirul, who switched over from the Forward Bloc to Trinamul in 2009, had allegedly told Left members in the area, including Rezaul and Thandu, to join him. “Those who did not became his targets,” Reksona said.

On January 31, 2010, Thandu and another CPM worker, Jamal Sheikh, were killed in a bomb attack in Labhpur’s Kazipara, Ujala told Mishra. Fifteen minutes later, CPM zonal committee member Fazlul Karim was also killed in another bomb attack.

“Manirul’s men were behind the attacks and we had mentioned the names of 22 of his associates in the FIR,” Reksona said.

According to her, Rezaul died on February 22 when bombs were hurled at him. “Manirul and 13 others were named in the FIR related to the murder of my uncle,” she added.

Mishra said he was not aware of the murders of the four CPM workers. “I have asked the local party unit to submit a report. We are with the family and will provide them all help to get justice,” he said.