A Trinamool Congress leader was shot dead in Algram area of North Dinajpur on Friday night, leading to a fresh war of words between the ruling party and BJP. Hours after a probe was initiated, North Dinajpur SP Anoop Jaiswal was transferred. The deceased, identified as Vikash Majumdar (51), was returning home after meeting police officials of Itahar station when he was shot in the back of his head at point-blank range.
Jaiswal was transferred to the state Criminal Investigation Department as Senior Superintendent and has been replaced by Deputy Commissioner (Kolkata Traffic Police) Sumit Kumar. He is the third police officer to be transferred after what is alleged to be panchayat board-related violence. Earlier, in Amdanga, a DSP and an officer-in-charge of the local police station were transferred after two TMC leaders were killed.
Police sources said circumstantial evidence suggests that Majumdar first stopped his bike, following which he was shot in the back of the head. He was found lying in a pool of blood by villagers who rushed him to Raigunj Superspeciality hospital, where he was declared brought dead.
The incident prompted the local TMC unit to call for a strike on Saturday, which was later withdrawn after the intervention of senior leaders. In Itahar, the BJP had bagged 13 seats while TMC secured 12 out of 25 seats. The BJP had a majority in Itihar and formed a board. Local Trinamool Congress leaders alleged BJP of continuous violence in the area.
“The BJP is responsible for this murder. This party had been creating a lot of trouble in the area over the formation of panchayat board since the day poll was announced. BJP killed him since he was a popular leader of TMC,” said TMC district president Amol Acharya. Denying all allegation, BJP leaders claimed the murder was the fallout of a factional feud within TMC.
“BJP has got no connection with this incident. He has been murdered due to faction feud within the party,” said Shankar Bhattacharya, district BJP president. Sources said Itahar had been tense for about a week over the formation of the panchayat board. Last week, around 20 people including police officers were injured in clashes between TMC and opposition parties. Bombs were hurled and bullets were fired in various pockets of North Dinajpur. At least three police officials were injured.
The violence occurred on the back of a recent Supreme Court ruling which did not interfere in the seats won uncontested in the panchayat elections. 3-yr-old shot at in Malda still critical The condition of the three-year-old son of a panchayat leader continued to remain critical on Saturday, two days after he was shot at by unidentified miscreants in Manikchak area of Malda. His mother, who won the recent panchayat elections as a BJP candidate before joining the TMC, has pointed her finger at her former party.
“The child is still critical. A medical board has been formed. Even if he is fine, he will take a lot of time to recover,” said a source.