regular-article-logo Wednesday, 22 May 2024

Mamata Banerjee 'pushed from behind': Didi given three stitches after fall at home

Police sources said Mamata had told senior officers, including police commissioner Vineet Goyal, that she had been pushed from behind. No FIR has been lodged but a probe has begun, sources said

Our Bureau Calcutta Published 15.03.24, 05:14 AM
Mamata Banerjee being taken home from SSKM on Thursday night.

Mamata Banerjee being taken home from SSKM on Thursday night. Picture by Pradip Sanyal

  • Mamata Banerjee's health condition stable; doctors keeping close watch: reports PTI

Chief minister Mamata Banerjee cut her crown after being “pushed from behind” at home on Thursday evening, but returned stitched up and stable from SSKM Hospital a few hours later.


Conversations with multiple sources suggested that Mamata, 69, had fallen and hit her forehead against a showcase. Images released by Trinamul — showing blood oozing from a cut on her forehead — caused concern in political circles across the country.

Police sources said Mamata had told senior officers, including police commissioner Vineet Goyal, that she had been pushed from behind. No FIR has been lodged but a probe has begun, sources said.

“She fell because she was pushed from behind,” Kajari Banerjee, wife of Mamata’s brother Karthick, told reporters without elaborating.

“Chief minister Mamata Banerjee reported to our hospital around 7.30pm, with a history of fall (at) her home, due to some push from behind,” SSKM director Manimoy Bandyopadhyay said.

“She had cerebral concussion and sharp cuts on her head and above her nose, from where she was bleeding profusely. Initially, she was assessed by the heads of the departments of neurosurgery and medicine, and cardiologists, and her vitals were stabilised. Three stitches were given on her forehead and one above the nose, and dressing was done.”

An eight-member medical board felt she was stable.

“She was advised to remain admitted for observation but she preferred to go home. She will continue to be under close watch…. She will again be assessed tomorrow and subsequent treatment will be decided accordingly,” Bandyopadhyay said.

Mamata left for home around 9.40pm. A hospital source told this newspaper at 9.45pm that she was in excruciating pain but stable.

Sources said Mamata suffered the injury after returning to her 30B Harish Chatterjee Street home from an event in Ekdalia where she unveiled a statue of the late Subrata Mukherjee, former panchayat minister.

A source in Mamata’s family told The Telegraph that after the chief minister fell, her attendant began screaming: “Didi has fallen down.”

Mamata’s nephew and heir apparent Abhishek Banerjee immediately took her to hospital in his car. There were bloodstains in the car.

The chief minister was admitted to Cabin Twelve-and-a-Half in the Woodburn Ward of SSKM and then taken, in a wheelchair, to the Radio Imaging Centre at the adjacent Bangur Institute of Neurosciences for a CT scan. The doctors did not find anything critical in the CT scan report, a source said.

Bandyopadhyay said investigations like ECG, echocardiogram and a Doppler test were done, too.

As soon as news of the injury spread, get-well messages poured in from across the country. Among those who wished her were Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Vice-President Jagdeep Dhankhar, chief ministers Arvind Kejriwal, Naveen Patnaik and M.K. Stalin, state Congress president Adhir Chowdhury, CPM state secretary Md Salim and state BJP chief Sukanta Majumdar.

Governor C.V. Ananda Bose arrived at the hospital around 10pm, after Mamata had left, and spoke to the doctors.

Trinamul seemed to heave a collective sigh of relief as Mamata left for home with a bandaged head. Her party faithful had till then been on tenterhooks, unsure of how long she might have to stay off political activities so close to the elections.

“Didi is very strong, mentally and physically.... She is not someone to rest at home in election season. But the resumption of her normal life would depend on her situation and medical advice,” a source said.

A wheelchair-bound Mamata, her leg in a cast, had campaigned extensively for the 2021 Assembly elections after suffering an injury in Nandigram, which she had blamed on an alleged conspiracy to murder her.

Mamata often says that not an inch of her body was spared assault and injury during Left Front rule. She had brought the subject up most recently in her Habra address on Tuesday, alleging a murderous attack on her on August 16, 1990, by Lalu Alam, then a member of the CPM youth wing, at Hazra in south Calcutta.

The attack had resulted in multiple injuries, including a head injury, and catapulted her to the national limelight.

She had also spoken of an injury suffered during police action on a rally she was leading on July 21, 1993, in central Calcutta. Thirteen protesters died in police firing.

Most recently, in Burdwan on January 24, she suffered a “minor” head injury when the driver of her car braked to avoid a collision with another vehicle that had suddenly got in the way. She had said that day that she was lucky to be alive.

In September-October last year, Mamata was confined to her home on medical advice after hurting her already injured left knee during a Spain-UAE tour.

Last July, she had undergone microsurgery to reduce pain in the left knee, caused by a ligament injury suffered while getting out of a helicopter in June. The ligament injury had forced her to sit out the final phases of the panchayat election campaign.

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