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BJP workers clash with police, vandalise public property; one dead

BJP workers clash with police, vandalise public property; one dead

Darjeeling: Violence erupted over BJP's Uttarkanya campaign in Siliguri on Monday. As BJP supporters tried to lay siege on the mini secretariat, vandalising barricades, brick batting and resorting to arson, police resorted to firing tear gas shells and using a water cannon to disperse the mob. The BJP leaders alleged that a supporter lost his life. They have called a 12 hour bandh of North Bengal on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Section 144 crpc had been imposed in the area.

The West Bengal police official tweets stated: "Today in Siliguri, serious acts of violence were committed by the supporters of a political party during their protest program. They resorted to arson, brick-batting, firing and vandalism of government property."

The police in another tweet stated that the police have shown restraint and didn't resort to lathi-charge or use firearms. Only water cannons and tear gas were used. "However, death of a person has been reported. Body is being sent for post mortem. The actual cause of death will be known only after the PM" claimed the tweet. BJP and Bharatiya Janta Yuva Morcha on Monday took out two processions from two directions to reach Uttarkanya. At around 12:30 a rally from Jalpaimore arrived at Naukaghat and destroyed the first barricade by puting it on fire.

The rally destroyed the second barricade as well and reached the third barricade at Tin Batti More, 2 km from Uttarkanya. Here the crowd went berserk and tried to breach it. Police used a water cannon to disperse the mob. A Pathersathi (Wayside Inn under the Tourism department) run by a self-help group was vandalised along with a traffic police booth. A bus and two scooters suffered the same fate. Another rally arrived from the Fulbariand protesters burnt tyres on the highway and set barricades on fire. "The police attacked a peaceful rally. President's rule has to be imposed immediately in the State. We have called a 12 hour North Bengal bandh on Tuesday," stated BJP State President Dilip Ghosh.

Later addressing the press, Ministers Gautam Deb and Aroop Biswas vehemently condemned the violence unleashed by BJP supporters.

"The BJP has launched a conspiracy to trigger violence throughout the state, create unrest and impose Article 356 of the constitution. Is this a peaceful rally? More than 15 policemen are injured. They have destroyed government property, brick batted, held public at ransom and even vandalised private shops. The BJP has called for a bandh against their own Government on Tuesday in support of the Farmers' protest," stated Deb.

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