People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)


No. 16

April 21, 2013







Bengal Violence Surpasses Emergency: Biman Basu


From Our Special Correspondent in Kolkata


WEST Bengal witnessed a storm of terror over three days after April 9 by the ruling Trinamul Congress (TMC), in which more than 1200 offices of Left parties and mass organisations were subjected to brutal attacks. From Kolkata to Darjeeling, no district was spared from this organised mayhem. Many Left activists were injured.


In Siliguri, consecutive attacks terrorised the whole city. TMC hooligans attacked the CPI(M)ís Darjeeling district office --- Anil Biswas Bhawan --- in Siliguri on April 9 night. They threw stones and damaged the cars parked outside the party office. The district unit of the Left Front had a prescheduled public meeting on April 10 to protest the failure of the local municipal corporation. The leaders of Left Front also condemned the attack by TMC-backed goons on Anil Biswas Bhawan. After the meeting, a huge rally was also brought out. Just after that , TMC hooligans attacked the office again led by North Bengal development minister Gautam Deb and MLA Rudranarayan Bhattacharya. The hoodlums threw stonen to the party office. Several party activists including some reporters were injured by the stones. Police remained silent spectator of the incident. Later, police started lathi-charge. And they only attacked people who were assembled in the side of the party office. Police started arresting student and youth leaders from the party office without giving any reason for the arrest.


After few hours, a big group of police led by the SP of police entered into the Anil Biswas Bhawan. They went to the secretariat room in the second floor and ill behaved with the party leaders. They arrested 53 persons including former minister and convener of Darjeeling district Left Front Ashok Bhattacharya, acting secretary of CPI (M) district committee Jibesh Sarkar and former Member of Parliament Saman Pathak. Many veterans, women, SFI leaders and mass-singer were arrested. 43 of them were kept in jail custody. The brutality of police in Siliguri was reflected when Santosh Sahani , a first year college student and SFI activist was arrested . He was sick and was admitted in hospital. Sahani was chained in the hospital bed, violating human rights regulations. The mother of arrested DYFI leader Amit Dey died in shock,


In North 24 Parganas, CPI(M) zonal offices in  Barrackpore, Naihati, Bijpur and Banga were destroyed. More than 100 party offices throughout the district were vandalized and more than 30 CPI(M) activists were injured in attacks. In Jagaddal, the Forward Bloc office was vandalised. Forward Bloc state secretary and veteran Left Front leader, Ashok Ghosh, visited the office along with CPI(M) leaders. Such was the extent of vandalism that he could not restrain his tears. Former Forward Block MLA, Haripada Biswasís house was also vandalised. In Haroa and Barasat-2 block, CPI(M) activists were attacked and offices vandalised.


In West Midnapore, the CPI(M)ís Midnapore town and Debra zonal offices, local committee office in Loada, and offices in Bharatpur, Daspur 1, Gopiballavpur 2, Keshpur, Chandrakona, Dantan 2 and Belda were attacked and vandalised by TMC goons. TMC miscreants and anti-socials set fire to at least 15 houses in Gopiballavpur area.


In East Midnapore, the CPI(M)ís zonal office of Egra as well as local and branch offices in Mahishadal, Batkunda, Gopalchak, Haldia and Patashpur Ghera were severely ransacked. Offices of the RSP and Socialist Party were also attacked.


In Bankura, Taldangra zonal committee office of the CPI(M) and local offices in Birrada, Harmasra, Panchmura, Sardakan, Kotulpur and Onda were vandalised by TMC supporters. There was an armed attack on the Taldangra office. Indpur zonal office was burnt down. In Kotulpur, 16 houses belonging to agricultural workers were set on fire.


In Nadia, the CPI(M)ís Hanskhali and Santipur zonal offices were attacked by TMC criminals. Party offices in Fulia, Kalyani and Gayeshspur were also ransacked.


In Purulia, the CPI(M)ís district committee office was vandalised by TMC goons in front of the police. A party whole timer, Sekh Raju, was brutally injured in this incident.


In Burdwan, the City Centre and Steel City zonal offices in  Durgapur were vandalised. Local and branch offices in Budbud-Galsi, Sagardanga, Dhobighat, Jhanjra Old Colony, Gogla, Pandabeswar, Kalna, Barabani, Rupnarayanpur and Memari were also ransacked by TMC goons. A large number of party supporters and local people were beaten up during the incidents in Memari and Durgapur.


In Birbhum, the Suiri zonal office of the CPI(M) was looted while party offices in Nanur and Kirnahar were set on fire. At Bolpur in Sian, the attack on CPI(M) office started with bombs and then it was burnt. In Mallarpur, shops were looted.


In North Dinajpur, TMC goons attacked the CPI(M)ís local office in Islampur Sadar and vandalised it. They set afire the banners and the martyrs stand demanding justice for SFI leader Sudipta who died in custodial death. They attacked Chopra zonal office on the next day.


In Jalpaiguri, zonal party offices in Kumargram, Maynaguri and Jalpaiguri were attacked.


In Coochbehar, 86 CPI(M) offices and 19 Forward Bloc offices were rampaged. Zonal offices in Coochbihar South, Tufanganj and Sitalkuchi were also attacked. Local offices in Natabari 1 and 2, Deocharai, Krisnapur, Balrampur, Chilakhana were vandalised by TMC miscreants; 16 houses were vandalised in Toofanganj. At least 29 Left activists were injured and hospitalised.


In Hooghly, the CPI(M)ís district office was attacked as TMC activists gheraoed the office for two hours. The cars parked there were rampaged. DYFI district office was destroyed and looted. Jangipara zonal office was burnt and fire tenders were not allowed to enter the area. Tarakeswar zonal office was set on fire. At Patula in Khanaku, nearly 30 houses of poor villagers were looted and then set on fire. Here too the fire brigade was for hours not allowed to come to their rescue. At Majhpara in Khanakul, a TMC gang entered the village and fired indiscriminately. Then they set afire 40 houses. 


In South 24 Parganas, the CPI(M)ís district committee office in Aruipur was attacked. The party offices in Bhangar and Gangulibagan were also attacked and vandalised by TMC goons.     


In Howrah, the partyís zonal offices in Amta and Udaynarayanpur were attacked. CITU office was ransacked in Belur.


Not only that the CPI(M) and SFI activists were targeted for attack, TMC miscreants --- emboldened by the threat doled out by the chief minister herself --- attacked the Presidency University campus too without any provocation. An armed TMC gang entered the prestigious campus and beat up students, manhandled girl students and finally ransacked the Baker Laboratory, a heritage physics laboratory, revered as one of the most advanced science laboratories in the country. The whole episode stunned the academic community.


Biman Basu, secretary of the CPI(M)ís West Bengal state committee and chairman of the West Bengal Left Front, has condemned these attacks and termed the attitude of the state government as inhuman. He said these attacks had, in barbarity, even surpassed the terror regime during the Emergency.


Suryakanta Misra, leader of the opposition in West Bengal assembly, visited the villages in Khanakul area where several houses were burnt.