Members of the Association for Protection of Democratic Rights (APDR) were forcefully stopped by a group of men who were carrying Indian flags in their hand near Janbazar area on S N Banerjee Road. “I have heard that an APDR rally was attacked. BJP hooligans attacked the rally, which was taken out today by members of APDR and leftists. I have asked the police to take stringent action against those involved,” said the chief minister.
The rally started from College Street to Esplanade in the presence of Kolkata Police. When the protesters were heading towards Esplanade from Janbazar, the group of miscreants reportedly started calling them “anti-nationals”. They also allegedly shouted slogans at the rally participants, asking them to go to Pakistan.
APDR members also alleged that the attackers were members of a Hindutva outfit. “We have all the right to stand for whatever we believe in. We are hopeful that the police will act against the attackers,” APDR’s Sujit Bhadra told reporters. Police sources said they are trying to identify the attackers. The APDR has filed a complaint over the incident.
Denying the allegations, BJP state president Dilip Ghosh said, “ The attack was definitely unfortunate, but the rally was also organised with an intention to provoke people. They were taking out a rally against warmongers, without any war being announced.”