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Threat call to principal, finger at drug accused

Debashis Bhowmick, the principal of Rishi Bankim Chandra Evening College, on Thursday. (Bhabatosh Chakraborty)

A college principal has lodged a police complaint saying a youth had threatened to kill him if he refused to accept a Part-I examination form after the deadline had passed.

Debashis Bhowmick, the head of Rishi Bankim Chandra Evening College in Naihati, has identified the youth as Bullet, who police said had “criminal records” and was lodged in Barrackpore jail.

“Bullet was arrested a month ago in connection with a drugs case and is lodged in Barrackpore jail. We are trying to find out whether someone else had made the calls identifying himself as Bullet or Bullet himself had managed to get hold of a cellphone in the jail and called the principal,” said an officer.

According to the complaint lodged with Naihati police station, the first call came around 7.45pm on June 15. The caller asked him to accept a Part-I examination form of the West Bengal State University, to which the college is affiliated, failing which the principal “may be killed”.

The last date for submitting such forms “without fine” was May 23 and “with fine”, May 27. The exams started on June 26.

He received a second call from the same number around half an hour later. “The caller said that if I failed to carry out his order, the college would be ransacked and I would come under attack. But I did not accept the form,” Bhowmick recalled.
During the last call from the number, which came on Monday, the caller identified himself as Bullet.

“Apart from the three calls, some local youths are constantly harassing me and threatening me with dire consequences for not accepting the form,” the principal said.
Most of his colleagues were in the dark about the threat calls till he spoke about them at a meeting in the college on Wednesday.

Teachers and other employees of the college later urged the police to take “prompt action” to prevent “criminal elements” from vitiating the ambience of the college. “The police have promised to ensure my safety but I am under severe mental pressure,” said Bhowmick.

He alleged the “criminal elements” had been for some time trying to interfere in the administration of the college, resulting in a decline in student enrolment.

“Ours is a co-educational college but we have noticed that admission applications from girls have reduced this year,” the principal said. “We are trying to identify and arrest the accused,” said an officer of the Barrackpore police commissionerate.

Accidents: Kalpana Ghosh, 50, was knocked down by a speeding motorcycle in front of Bidhannagar College in Salt Lake on Wednesday night. The Kestopur resident was taken to Bidhannagar Sub-divisional Hospital with serious head injuries but she was referred to NRS Medical College and Hospital. She died at the Sealdah hospital on Thursday.

An 80-year-old man was hit by a speeding Karunamoyee-bound bus in Salt Lake’s EC block around 9.30am. Bimal Kishor Roy, who was on his way home from a local market, was admitted to a private hospital.