BJP worker found hanging from tree

An 18-year-old BJP youth wing worker who had "campaigned extensively" in the panchayat polls was found hanging from a tree in Purulia on Wednesday, allegedly hours after calling his father to say he had been abducted by Trinamul activists.

By Abhijeet Chatterjee and Pranab Mondal in Purulia
  • Published 31.05.18
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Purulia: An 18-year-old BJP youth wing worker who had "campaigned extensively" in the panchayat polls was found hanging from a tree in Purulia on Wednesday, allegedly hours after calling his father to say he had been abducted by Trinamul activists.

The BJP accused Trinamul of plotting the "cold-blooded" murder of Trilochon Mahato, whose body was spotted around 7am at Supurdih village in Balarampur.

A handwritten letter found nearby said: "This is for doing BJP politics from age 18. Been trying to kill you since the vote. Failed. Today you are dead." A similar message was scrawled on his white T-shirt.

Trilochon and his father Hariram, a BJP mandal president, had played a key role in Balarampur during the rural polls that saw the BJP win all nine gram panchayats and two zilla parishad seats in the block. A mandal covers an area with 60 to 70 booths.

"He did not return home last night and called us to inform that he had been abducted by Trinamul supporters. This morning, we found his body. My son had to pay a price for his association with the BJP," Hariram said.

Hariram has lodged an FIR against six Trinamul workers.

Purulia police chief Joy Biswas said a murder case had been registered. Initial enquiries pointed to personal enmity but a probe was on, he added.

The BJP has called a bandh in Balarampur on Thursday.

Party president Amit Shah tweeted: "Deeply hurt by the brutal killing of our young karyakarta, Trilochan Mahato in Balarampur, West Bengal. A young life full of possibilities was brutally taken out under state's patronage. He was hanged on a tree just because his ideology differed from that of state sponsored goons."

He added: "The present TMC govt in West Bengal has surpassed the violent legacy of Communist rule...."

Trinamul secretary-general Partha Chatterjee denied the allegations. "Something scribbled on the back of a murder victim does not substantiate any claim that Trinamul was behind the murder in any way whatsoever. The assumptions are outrageous," he said.

Chatterjee termed the BJP chief's tweet "ridiculous, uncalled for and provocative".

A police source said the murder suggests a violent turf war has resumed in Jungle Mahal after a seven-year lull since the change of guard in Bengal in May 2011.