Youth push in ruling Trinamool ahead of Bengal civic body polls


AGARTALA: TMC general secretary Abhishek Banerjee on Monday claimed that the ruling BJP in Tripura was trying to “throttle” the voice of its opposition leaders as the party has no regard for democratic values.

He arrived here on Monday morning, a day after the party’s youth leader, Saayoni Ghosh, was arrested for allegedly disrupting a meeting that was being held by Chief Minister Biplab Deb.

Banerjee’s scheduled rally in the state was, however, cancelled as the police denied permission, citing “law and order problems and political tension”.

Addressing a press conference, the senior TMC leader asserted that the TMC will defeat the BJP and put an end to the saffron camp’s “misrule” in the next assembly elections.

“The BJP in Tripura is making a mockery of democracy. Now that we have entered the state, we will ensure BJP’s defeat. The reasons shown by the police to cancel my rally proves that there exists no rule of law in the state,” he told a press conference.

Hitting out at the administration in Tripura over Ghosh’s arrest, Banerjee said the TMC youth leader was held on charges of criminal intimidation and attempt to murder, but it was “unclear who did she try to intimidate or kill”.

“Biplab Deb is so scared that he tried to falsely implicate a woman. Police could not give a reply when asked who Sayoni attempted to intimidate or kill,” he quipped.

“You are chanting the slogan — ‘Bharat mata ki jai’ — and then attacking our women candidates. There is a deliberate attempt to throttle the voice of opposition parties,” he stated.

Ghosh was on Monday granted bail by the court of Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate (ACJM), West Tripura district.

She was arrested after raising ‘khela hobe’ (game will be played) slogan on Sunday to allegedly “disrupt” a street-corner meeting being held by Chief Minister Biplab Deb.

Some people accompanying her had apparently hurled stones at those attending the meet, according to police sources.

Several TMC supporters who had gathered outside the police station, where Ghosh was taken to after arrest, also reportedly came under attack on Sunday.

Dubbing the “double engine government” as the “government of double thief”, Banerjee said, “The way the BJP goons attacked our supporters and activists at a police station only go on to show that a jungle rule prevails in the state. The ruling BJP in Tripura is using its police for narrow political gains, but this would not last long. We will fight them. The government led by Biplab Deb will not be able to silence the TMC.”

He alleged that the Biplab Deb government has defied a Supreme Court order that asked Tripura to ensure free and fair local elections in the state.

“This government has no respect for the judiciarya nd do not care for Supreme Court or high court orders. Nobody is secure in the state. Lawyers are not safe in court, doctors are not safe in hospital, and patients are also being attacked,” he said.

The Supreme Court has recently asked the Tripura government to ensure that no political party in the fray for the coming local body elections “is prevented from pursuing its electoral rights in accordance with law and from campaigning in a peaceful and orderly manner”.

Earlier in the day, shortly before Banerjee’s arrival here, an unattended bag at the Agartala airport had triggered a bomb scare.

The bag was later moved to a cooling pit, with Bomb Threat Assessment Committee having declared it as a “non-specific threat”.