Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) President JP Nadda on Tuesday, 4 May, reached Kolkata for a two-day visit, following reports of post-poll violence in West Bengal allegedly targeting Opposition political workers.
Meanwhile, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee also convened a meeting on Tuesday with Chief Secretary Alapan Bandopadhyay, Home Secretary H K Dwidevi, DGP P Nirajnayan, and Kolkata CP Soumen Mitra and took stock of the violence reported since 2 May.
As per reports, 14 people lost their lives across the state – nine of whom were claimed to be workers of the BJP and five of the Trinamool Congress (TMC).
The BJP national President said, “The incidents, which we saw after the results of West Bengal polls, shocked us and have us worried. I had heard of such incidents during India's partition. We had never seen such intolerance after the results of a poll, in independent India,” ANI quoted.
He added that the party was committed to “fight this ideological battle” and the ruling TMC was “full of intolerance”.
Nadda, who was scheduled to meet with party workers affected by the violence, met the family of deceased party worker Abhijeet Sarkar in Beliaghata, Kolkata.
Union Minister V Muraleedharan, state BJP chief Dilip Ghosh, and state General Secretary Locket Chatterjee were also present during the visit.
Speaking to news agency ANI, the BJP chief said, “Abhijeet Sarkar's mother was weeping for him. Only those who can't hear her screams can call such serious issues a stunt, a drama,” adding that BJP won’t tolerate political oppression on the people of Bengal.
“We are ready to fight democratically. I will go to South 24 Parganas now and later visit the houses of those workers whose lives ended a few hours after the results,” Nadda had earlier said.
PM Modi Calls WB Governor, BJP Leader Moves SC
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had telephoned the Governor of West Bengal, Jagdeep Dhankhar, to discuss the deteriorating law and order situation after the results of the Legislative Assembly elections were declared and the TMC came back to power with a decisive majority.
On Tuesday, Dhankhar tweeted that the PM had called to express "serious anguish and concern at alarmingly worrisome law and order situation". He tagged Banerjee in the tweet, saying “concerned must act in overdrive to restore order”.
The Ministry of Home Affairs, in a letter to the WB Chief Secretary sought a detailed report on the violence.
On Monday, the BJP had announced on Twitter a nationwide dharna to be held on 5 May in light of the violence.
Party leader Gaurav Bhatia, meanwhile, moved the Supreme Court to seek a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) probe into 'rampant' Bengal violence, PTI reported. Further, the leader sought directions for the state government to submit a report on the steps taken against the perpetrators of violence.
The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Tuesday, also took cognisance of the violence and ordered a fact-finding team to conduct a spot inquiry, ANI reported.
Multiple instances of violence, loot and plunder have been reported across West Bengal since 2 May, following the declaration of the results for the Legislative Assembly elections.
The houses and vehicles of some BJP candidates were allegedly attacked and a party office in Arambagh was set on fire, reported IANS.
Amid this, fake news found a new ground for propagation over WhatsApp and social media. Old and unrelated videos continue to be passed off as visuals of the recent political violence.
It is also important to note that the developments come at a time when the new government is yet to be sworn in and the state is technically under the Governor's rule. The new government will be formed on 5 May.