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3 traders attacked for extortion protest

Till Thursday evening police, however, could not arrest prime accused Amal Halder
Representational image
Representational image
File Photo

Subhasish Chaudhuri   |   Calcutta   |   Published 20.05.22, 01:54 AM

Three businessmen were attacked by goons when they reportedly refused to bow down to extortion demands in two separate incidents in Habra of North 24-Parganas and Santipur of Nadia district on Wednesday night.

In Habra, Raju Das, 41, and Shantanu Roy, 43, were shot at when they were closing their shop at the local Srinagar market. In Santipur, Jogesh Sikdar, 62, a garment trader, was badly beaten up by goons when he refused to shell out money.

Habra police detained two persons in connection with the firing and began an case of attempted murder.

Police and local sources said around 11.40pm when Raju Ghosh was locking the shutter of his shop, a group of miscreants who came on two motorbikes fired at him. The goons also shot at fellow businessman Shantanu Roy as he stood close to him. Both suffered bullet injuries in their abdomen. "

The two injured businessmen were rushed to Habra state general hospital, but they were transferred to a private hospital in Calcutta in the early hours of Thursday.

The incident sparked tension in the area. Local Trinamul MLA and minister Jyotipriyo Mullick rushed to the spot and talked to police. He later told reporters: “It appears that a group is trying to unleash tension in the area...We have told the police to take action against the goons.”

In Santipur, Sikdar said that he “strongly refused” to pay goons money. “I was preparing to submit a mass petition before district administration against extortion that angered the goons. They would have killed me had my friends not rescued in time and rushed me to hospital.”

A businessman in Nilmoni Market accused Amal Halder and his gang of unleashing terror. “They regularly extort money and torture us physically and mentally. On many occasions we informed police and local administration, but nothing has been done,” he said.

Till Thursday evening police, however, could not arrest prime accused Amal Halder.

Trinamul MLA Brajakishore Goswami met Sikdar at his home and assured stern police action against the extortionists.

An officer of Santipur police said a case against Amal and other members of the gang had started. All the accused persons named in the FIR are absconding.



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