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THREE CONGRESS leaders were arrested and one was detained on Friday in connection with the murder of a Trinamool Chhatra Parishad (TMCP) member in Murshidabad on Thursday night. TMCP leader Ashadul Sheikh was shot dead from a point-blank range at Bhakuri area in Berhampore, Murshidabad, sources said. Ashadul was riding a bike when some men hurled bombs at him. Following this, Ashadul fell from his two-wheeler and the assailants shot him. Ashadul’s associate Bablu Sheikh was injured in the attack, they added.
Following the murder, departmental action was taken against Inspector-in-charge of Berhampore Police Station Sailen Biswas. Trinamool alleged that the Congress was behind the attack. Based on a complaint lodged by local Trinamool leaders, police arrested three Congress leaders — former Murshidabad Zilla Sabhadhipati Shiladitya Haldar, former Berhampore Municipality councillor Hiru Haldar and Shyamal Hazra, a local Congressman.
Both the Haldars were known to be close to state Congress chief Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury. Santu Sinha, a local Congress leader, has been detained.
The three arrested leaders were produced in a Berhampore court, which remanded them to four days of police custody.
Trinamool leader and state Transport Minister Suvendu Adhikari alleged that Chowdhury was behind the attack. “The Congress is fast losing ground in this district (Murshidabad). Adhir Chowdhury has no other option but to indulge in politics of violence and death. He is masterminding these attacks. He should prove that Congress has no connection with the murder. Bablu Sheikh is injured and he is the eye-witness. He will know who have killed Ashadul. The investigation will bring out the truth. If needed, we will ask the CID to probe,” said Adhikari.
Chowdhury brushed aside the allegations, saying the murder was a fallout of infighting among Trinamool leaders. “ TMC is intentionally accusing Congress. It wants to shift everyone’s focus from Domkol Municipality election by arresting our leaders. TMC intends to wipe out Congress from Murshidabad. The police have arrested our leaders on the instruction of TMC. The police cannot perform an impartial probe into it,” he said.