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Congress seeks 'impartial inquiry' into Tripura violence

Our delegation sought security of our members and also treatment of all those injured in the clashes on Sunday: Prasanta Bhattacharjee
Manik Saha.
Manik Saha.
File photo

Umanand Jaiswal   |   Guwahati   |   Published 29.06.22, 01:34 AM

The Congress on Monday moved Tripura chief minister Manik Saha demanding an “impartial inquiry” into all recent incidents of violence and vandalism in the Congress offices by suspected BJP members.

This was revealed by Congress’ Rajya Sabha MP Syed Naseer Hussain, who was part of the delegation led by senior party leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury. The delegation met Saha in Agartala to apprise him about attacks on party members and offices in the capital city and elsewhere in the state.

Assam MP Gaurav Gogoi was also part of the delegation which was rushed by the party leadership to assess the situation arising out of the “attack” on Congress functionaries in Agartala.

Congress president Sonia Gandhi had constituted a three-member “fact-finding team” to submit a detailed report on the attack on PCC president Birajit Sinha and party workers post by-elections results.

In the bypolls to the four Assembly segments held on Thursday, the ruling BJP won three seats and the Congress one, its first in the present Assembly.

The winners for the BJP included chief minister Manik Saha (Town Bordowali), Swapna Das Paul (Surma) and Malina Debnath (Jubrajnagar). Sudip Roy Barman won the Agartala seat for the Congress.

Senior Tripura Congress leader and spokesperson Prasanta Bhattacharjee said that 19 Congress workers and leaders were injured, of whom four were hospitalised, including the PCC president. The Congress Bhavan was also attacked, he said.

“Three of the injured are still in hospital. Our Congress office at Post Office Chowmani is just about 30 metres away from two police stations. There is no law and order in the state. The police is inactive. Our FIRs are not accepted. We have requested the police that they don’t need to support us but at least they can help us and others by remaining acting neutrally,” Bhattacharjee told The Telegraph.

He said the AICC delegation met Saha in connection with Sunday’s incident.

“Our delegation sought security of our members and also treatment of all those injured in the clashes on Sunday. The AICC team also met the injured at the GB Hospital and our state president at his residence and visited the Congress Bhavan where they addressed a press conference,” Bhattacharjee said.

According to Bhattacharjee, the BJP was sure about winning all the four seats but Congress victory in Agartala came as a shock to them, triggering the attack on party workers and offices.

Congress offices in Khowai and South Tripura districts were also vandalised, another Congress member said.

The ruling BJP has dismissed the allegation, accusing the Congress of fomenting the violence in Agartala and that the BJP members responded in self-defence. A BJP leader said the chief minister has asked the police to take appropriate action and urged BJP members to exercise restraint.

Manik Saha had tweeted on Sunday: “I strongly condemn the brutal attack of the Congress goons on our Karykarta Shri Bishal Chakraborty after the results of the bypoll were declared. This evening I visited the AGMC Hospital & consulted with the doctors regarding his health. I pray for his speedy recovery & urge my karyakartas not to lose their temper even after such violent attacks.”

On the other hand, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi had also tweeted on Sunday: “Strongly condemn the vicious attack on our leaders & workers by BJP goons following @INCIndia’s win in the Agartala bypoll. The people are with us. Shameful that the police stood as mute spectators instead of stopping the attack. These BJP goons must be brought to justice.”

Saha took part in a BJP victory rally in Agartala on Monday and the situation is said to be under control.

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