West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday banned victory processions in the state, reports said. Banerjee alleged that these processions were creating law and order problem and asked the police to take “strong action against BJP [Bharatiya Janata Party] leaders if they try to create trouble”.
Banerjee said incidents of violence have increased in Bengal during victory rallies. “Poll results were declared on May 23 and it is already 14 days now,” she said, according to News18. “So, I think victory rallies should be over by now.”
BJP National Secretary Rahul Sinha said the order shows the poor law and order situation in Bengal. “The confession comes from the person [Banerjee] who is also the home minister [of the state],” he told the Hindustan Times.
Banerjee announced the ban while addressing reporters outside the home of Trinamool Congress leader Nirmal Kundu, who was killed at Nimta in North 24 Parganas on June 4. “The family told me that Nirmal became an enemy of the local BJP because he was not letting them set up a giant LCD screen outside his house for watching direct telecast of the swearing-in ceremony of the new government in Delhi,” said Banerjee, according to the Hindustan Times. “This is no ordinary supari [contract] killing. The conspiracy goes deeper.”
BJP leaders, on the other hand, claimed that Kundu was killed because of infighting in the TMC. “Miscreants in TMC are killing each other,” said BJP state president Dilip Ghosh. “They are dragging our name into their infighting.”
The police on Thursday arrested one Suman Kundu in connection with the murder. “Suman Kundu is known in the area as an active BJP worker,” said Barrackpore Deputy Commissioner of Police (zone 2) Ananda Roy. “During investigation we arrested Sujay Das, a criminal from the Baroah area of Murshidabad district and seized a country-made single shot pistol and three cartridges. There are more suspects.” Banerjee said the Criminal Investigation Department will probe the murder.
There has been a spate of violent incidents across West Bengal since the Lok Sabha election results were announced on May 23. This time, the BJP increased its seat share in Bengal to 18 from two seats that it won in the 2014 General Elections. The Trinamool Congress, which had won 34 seats in 2014, could secure only 22 this time. At least seven people have been killed in political violence in the state.
Banerjee alleged that the BJP used money to secure victory in the 18 seats. “Had the victory come through support of the people there would have been no violence,” said Banerjee. “After Indira Gandhi’s assassination, the Congress won 16 Lok Sabha seats in Bengal but not a single man was killed. In 2009, Congress and TMC jointly won 26 seats but there was no murder. The BJP has won only 18 seats using money and forgery and now look at the bloodbath.”