Trinamool Congress MLA Deepak Haldar, who was arrested on Monday for his alleged involvement in a clash at Fakir Chand College in South-24 Parganas’ Diamond Harbour, was granted bail by a local court on Tuesday.
Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate Ashis Gupta granted bail to Haldar, who was arrested at the instance of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee after visuals of the clash were aired on news channels.
Farooq Gharami and Anwar Hossain Mir, who were also arrested in connection with the violence, too secured bail. They reportedly were members of Haldar’s rival faction in the party.
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Haldar was arrested after several students sustained injuries when two factions of Trinamool Congress Chhatra Parishad (TMCP) clashed at the college. On Monday afternoon, a group of TMCP students, who were Halder’s supporters, clashed with a group close to Diamond Harbour Block I president Umapada Purkayastha. The row was on who will control the union room.
Halder was informed about the clash, following which, he reportedly came to the college. On seeing him, his supporters became more aggressive and started fighting with sticks, rods and bamboos. At least 15 TMCP members were injured.
On Tuesday, Halder claimed his own partymen had conspired against him. “A section of my own partymen want to taint my image before Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee so that I am not given a ticket for the next Assembly elections,” he said.
The Opposition, meanwhile, termed Halder’s arrest as a stunt by Trinamool Congress to divert the attention of the people the infighting.
“It is an eyewash. The police will naturally not press any serious charge against an influential leader like Halder. The party is trying to pull off a political gimmick,” said CPM MP Mohammed Selim.
BJP MLA Samik Bhattacharya added: “Given the prevailing fascist rule prevailing across the state, especially in educational institutions, I was surprised to see that police had the courage to arrest Halder. The entire episode was was orchestrated with an eye on the Assembly elections.”