Bharatiya Janata Party supporters on Monday afternoon beat up Congress workers demonstrating against demonetisation outside the former’s party office on Murali Sen lane in Central Kolkata.
Traffic along Central Avenue was thrown out of gear for over an hour and police chased away supporters of both the parties. A police picket was posted in the area to maintain peace.
Around one in the afternoon, about 200 Congress workers shouting slogans against Prime Minister Narendra Modi assembled outside the BJP office and burnt an effigy of Modi.
They said demonetisation had put common people in trouble and the situation had not improved as there was shortage of notes.
The Centre and Reserve Bank of India (RBI) could not tell when Rs 1,000 notes would come into the market, they said.
While the Congress workers were shouting slogans, some BJP workers came out of the party office and began beating them up. Some Congress workers then retaliated and a clash ensued.
Police soon chased away workers of both the parties. Congress workers alleged that BJP party workers were armed and beat them up with iron rods, which they brought from their party office.
They demanded that a search be conducted and the weapons including iron roads, if found during search, should be confiscated.
The Congress supporters said they had informed the police about Monday’s demonstration and police had given them permission and alleged that the BJP workers had beaten them up unprovoked.
There was a massive traffic jam on Central Avenue and a long queue of cars and buses were seen standing bumper to bumper.
The police could not divert the vehicles as people were seen running for shelter on College Street and its
The booksellers downed their shutters of the stalls.
West Bengal Pradesh Congress President Adhir Chowdhury alleged that BJP workers had been instructed to attack anyone opposing demonetisation.
“BJP is running the country is an autocratic way and cannot tolerate any criticism. The Prime Minister did not say a single word in Parliament and is making statements and tall promises outside.
“It is really unfortunate that anyone who is found criticising Modi has been branded as anti-national,”
he said adding that “no one can scare Congress and its workers will launch a bigger movement in future,” Chowdhury said.