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Groups clash in Bhangar over construction of power grid

Kolkata: Panic spread at the Anantapur area of Bhangar in South 24-Parganas close to the site where a proposed power grid would come up, following a clash that broke out between two groups over construction of the power grid.
Two cars and three motorcycles were set on fire by some of the group members and bombs were hurled during the incident taking place at Kolerhat area on Thursday morning. Some were reported to have suffered splinter injuries in the incident.
It has been learnt that the members of Jami Jibika Vastutantra Paribesh Raksha (JJVPR) committee took out a bike rally at around 11 am on Thursday. It was planned that after starting the rally from the power grid gate, it would end at Natun Hat area.
It was alleged that as the bike rally was passing through Kolerhat area of Anantapur More, some people hurled bombs on the rallyists. The committee members have pointed fingers at local Trinamool Congress leaders, who were in favour of the power grid in the area.
It may be mentioned here that the JJVPR committee was opposing the setting up of the power grid and they were supposed to write a letter to the Chief Minister in this regard on January 4.
Local Trinamool Congress leader Arabul Islam, however, denied the allegation of JJVPR and also alleged that the committee members who took part in the rally attacked the villagers and their party men with bombs.
They also fired bullets in which one Trinamool Congress worker had been injured. Islam also said that the power crisis would be eliminated if the power grid is constructed. Trinamool Congress later took out a peace rally in the area, he added.
Trinamool Congress district leaders claimed that there were some outsiders among the committee members, who organised the bike rally to create trouble. The local CPI-M leaders, Congress and Maoists were instigating the violence.
The local villagers protested against the violence and they want the power grid to take place in the area. The two vehicles which caught fire were carrying the bombs, alleged Islam.
As the news spread, the villagers blocked the road by felling trees in some parts of Bhangar. A huge contingent of police rushed to the spot to bring the situation under control. The villagers alleged that police came to the spot late.
Rajjak Mollah, Trinamool Congress MLA from Bhangar, said that there was no police permission for the rally. The rallyists had stocked bombs, alleged Mollah.
It may be mentioned that in early January, local people staged a demonstration, protesting against setting up of a power grid sub-station in Bhangar. The trouble led to the death of two villagers and torching of police vehicles.

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