BJP rallyists clash with police, choke traffic in Central Kolkata
Kolkata: Clashes broke out between BJP workers and police personnel in Kolkata on Wednesday during a massive rally organised by the party in protest against post-poll violence in Bashirhat.
BJP supporters and leaders were marching towards the Kolkata Police headquarters in Lalbazar from the Wellington area. When multiple rallies proceeded towards Lalbazar, the police lobbed tear gas shells and used water canon to disperse the party workers and foil attempts to create chaos in the city.
A few days ago, cops had stopped BJP leaders from bringing the bodies of party workers, who died in post-poll violence in Bashirhat, to Kolkata as the move could have triggered law and order issues.
Police officers had blocked BJP leaders' convoy and forced them to step back. Later, the BJP leaders announced that they would march to Lalbazar on Wednesday protesting the police action on them. Since Wednesday morning, the headquarters of Kolkata Police had multiple layers of security. Barricades were set up on the BB Ganguly Street to stop the rally from reaching Lalbazar.
Cops stopped the rally in the afternoon and asked the leaders to control their workers and go back. But the BJP workers and leaders did not listen to the cops. They allegedly tried to overpower the police officers.
BJP workers were continuously trying to break the barricades put up by police and move towards Lalbazar.
Having no other way, police resorted to lathi-charge. Later, water canon was charged aiming the rally to force the BJP workers to go back. Tear gas shells were also lobbed.
After facing strong resistance, the BJP workers went towards Fierce Lane. A barricade was also set up there. BJP workers tried to break the barricades but failed as the police used tear gas shells. Several BJP workers and leaders fell ill during the scuffle. Many of them were arrested and later released on bail. Due to the BJP's protest march, there was huge traffic congestion in and around Central Kolkata.