The Bharatiya Janata Party on Thursday accused Trinamool Congress supporters of killing one of its workers in a village in West Bengal’s East Burdwan district, reports said. The Trinamool Congress, however, denied the allegation.
Sushil Mondal was stabbed to death in Panduk village in Ketugram. A first information report has identified three men accused of murdering Mondal. Though they are reportedly known to be local Trinamool Congress workers, the FIR does not mention their political affiliation.
Abu Salim, the inspector in charge of Ketugram police station, said they were trying to verify if there was a political motive behind the murder. “We have received a complaint that named two persons,” Salim told Hindustan Times. “The accused are on the run. We are investigating the matter, including whether it was a political murder.”
However, Deputy Superintendent of Police Bhaskar Mukhopadhyay told PTI that Mondal was killed in a dispute over grazing goats.
BJP East Burdwan district committee member Anil Dutta alleged that Mondal was killed because he had chanted “Jai Shri Ram” and installed BJP flags in the village. BJP state President Dilip Ghosh claimed the murder of BJP workers had become a common occurence in West Bengal. “It is nothing new in Bengal,” Ghosh said. “Chanting the name of Ram is treated as a crime here. Those who are committing these crimes will get appropriate answers in due time.”
Trinamool Congress MLA Sheikh Sahnawaz told PTI that his party was not responsible for the murder and claimed that Mondal was killed because of an internal fight within the BJP.
Incidents of violence were reported across the state during the Lok Sabha elections. Post-poll clashes erupted across the state on May 25, two days after election results were announced. A man was shot dead in Nadia district while at least 30 people were injured in violence in several districts, including Birbhum, Bankura, West Midnapore, North 24 Parganas and South 24 Parganas. The following day, a BJP worker was murdered in Bhatpara in North 24 Parganas district.
A number of attacks on Trinamool Congress party offices were reported in Cooch Behar and Hooghly last week. The walls of many Trinamool Congress offices were painted saffron in North 24 Parganas district, and about 200 Trinamool Congress workers joined the BJP in West Midnapore district.