Congress leader Sudip Roy Barman sustained injuries after he was attacked by a group of men on Sunday night in Tripura’s capital Agartala, the party said on Monday. He was admitted to the ILS Hospital in the city.

The Congress has blamed the Bharatiya Janata Party for the attack.

Barman, who quit the BJP in February, is the Congress candidate from the Agartala Assembly constituency for the upcoming Tripura bye-elections, PTI reported.

On Sunday night, Barman had visited Congress worker Alok Goswami’s home, where a group of unidentified youth launched an attack, said Officer-in-Charge of Abhoynagar Outpost Uttam Paul.

“The youths had gathered outside the house of Goswami, a BJP worker who had recently joined the Congress,” Paul said.

Paul said that a scuffle broke out between the men and Barman’s personal security guards, PTI reported.

“Before we could reach the place, the former MLA [Sudip Roy Barman] was hit by bricks and he fell to the ground,” he said. “One of the police officers also suffered injuries.”

The men also allegedly vandalised Barman’s car and the Congress party flags, NDTV reported.

Sikha Deb, leader of the Mahila Congress (the women’s wing of the party), said that Barman sustained a fracture in his nasal bone, according to PTI.

“We have not received any written complaint yet regarding the incident involving the former MLA,” Paul added.

Meanwhile, Tripura Pradesh Congress Committee President Birajit Sinha urged voters to give “the perfect answer” to the attack by voting for the Congress.

“I strongly condemn the brutal attack done to Sri Sudip Roy Barman Ji and other Congress leaders by the BJP goons and hope the common people will give the perfect answer through the ballot,” he wrote on Twitter. “Praying for his speedy recovery to the almighty lord.”

Barman said he will resume campaigning soon.

Barman was the health minister in the BJP government. He was removed from the state Cabinet in June 2019 after the then Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb was reportedly unhappy with his alleged anti-party activities.

Barman, who is the son of former Tripura Chief Minister Samir Ranjan Burman, had quit the Congress in 2016 and joined the Trinamool Congress. A year later, he and five other Trinamool Congress MLAs joined the BJP. Barman played an important role in strengthening the BJP-Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura coalition in the state during the 2018 Assembly elections.

Meanwhile, the BJP has filed a complaint alleging that the Congress workers damaged its flags at Ujan Abhoynagar on Sunday night, reported PTI.

Bye-elections to the four Assembly constituencies in Tripura will start on June 23. Votes will be counted on June 26.