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regular-article-logo Sunday, 16 June 2024

Siliguri: Local land mafia raids Ramakrishna Mission building, workers and guards assaulted

Swami Shivapremananda, secretary of the unit, said the Mission had received the land from Sunil Kumar Roy (who passed away a few years ago) through a properly registered trust deed

Our Bureau Siliguri, Malda/Jalpaiguri Published 21.05.24, 11:47 AM
Narendra Modi, who addressed an election rally in Jhargram on Monday (PTI picture), said the attack on the Ramakrishna Mission building in Jalpaiguri highlighted 'the escalating situation in the state'

Narendra Modi, who addressed an election rally in Jhargram on Monday (PTI picture), said the attack on the Ramakrishna Mission building in Jalpaiguri highlighted 'the escalating situation in the state' PTI

A group of over 10 men allegedly raided a building of Ramakrishna Mission in Siliguri on Sunday early morning, beat up workers and security personnel and took them away before freeing them at different locations later.

Sources have said those suspected to be associated with the local land mafia were behind the attack.

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Sewak House, a two-story building located on a plot of 1.59 acres on Sevoke Road in ward 42 of the Siliguri Municipal Corporation, is looked after by the Jalpaiguri branch of Ramakrishna Mission.

Swami Shivapremananda, secretary of the unit, said the Mission had received the land from Sunil Kumar Roy (who passed away a few years ago) through a properly registered trust deed.

“From the property, we execute various social welfare and relief projects. On Sunday early morning, some people carrying firearms, daggers and iron rods, jumped over the boundary wall and entered the premises,” Shivapremananda, who filed a complaint at Bhaktinagar police station, said.

The 10-15 attackers, who were wearing helmets to avoid identification, first overpowered the two security guards, including an armed one, and then tied them up and snatched away their cellphones.

“They threw away the SIM cards and returned the cellphones. The attackers climbed upstairs, where our workers stay. The workers (there were five of them) were also assaulted,” Shivapremananda said.

All the seven — the workers and the security guards — were forced to walk out and board a vehicle.

“The attackers took the vehicle near New Jalpaiguri railway station and dropped five of our people there... Two others were released from the car at other locations,” said the secretary.

A police team visited the building and started a probe. Sources said some people had been eyeing the plot that is situated in an area where land prices shot up exponentially in recent years.

The Ramakrishna Mission, on the other hand, has been planning to set up a school on the plot.

“Our officers are probing the case. We are trying to find out the motive behind the trespass and the attack,” said a source in Siliguri Metropolitan Police.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who was in Bengal on Monday to address public meetings, referred to the incident.

“The chief minister is threatening these organisations... This intimidation emboldens TMC goons further. Recently, vandalism at Ramakrishna Mission Ashram in Jalpaiguri highlights the escalating situation in the state,” Modi told a rally in Jhargram.

Sources in Siliguri said the raid on the Sewak House had prima facie no political links.

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