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Two Dead in Bhangar Violence, Mamata Government Blames 'Outsiders'

Kolkata: The Congress on Wednesday demanded a judicial inquiry and CBI probe into the clash between protesting villagers and police in Bhangar that left two persons dead, while the Left parties condemned the “police firing on farmers”.

The ruling Trinamool Congress claims “outsiders” had fired at the villagers.

West Bengal pradesh Congress chief Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, who visited the homes of the two persons killed, said: “We demand judicial inquiry and CBI probe into the killing of innocent villagers. I strongly condemn and criticise the incident.”

He also appealed to state Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to come to the South 24 Parganas district’s Bhangar area immediately.

“I appeal to the Chief Minister to come to Bhangar and inspect the situation herself. She frequently visited Singur and Nandigram during the land movement (against the erstwhile Left Front’s efforts to acquire farmland in 2006-08).

“Why is she not coming here?” he questioned.

Left Front heavyweights, including CPI-M general secretary Sitaram Yechury, condemned the “police firing on farmers” and urged the state government to “stop using force against protesters”.

“Police firing on farmers in Bhangar in Bengal resulting in deaths is unacceptable,” Yechury said during a party meeting in Kolkata’s satellite township Salt Lake.

Communist Party of India-Marxist politburo member Mohammed Salim and LF legislature party leader Sujan Chakraborty also visited violence hit Bhangar on Wednesday and held the state police responsible for the death of two people.

Chakraborty termed the Bhangar developments as “state terrorism” and “war against villagers” and said the peasants were fighting against “land sharks”.

At the Salt Lake meeting, CPI-M state secretary Surjya Kanta Mishra warned the Chief Minister that his party would put up road blockades before every administrative building in the state if she did “not mend her ways”.

“The people of Bhangar have shown the way to resist the police… Wait for our march to Nabanna (state secretariat),” he said.

However, the Trinamool Congress rubbished the allegations against police and said “outsiders” had shot the villagers.

“Outsiders have flocked to Bhangar from different places and they are trying to confuse the people here. However, this is not going to happen. People have liked the good governance of Mamata Banerjee and no one would be able to use separatist power in the state,” Trinamool Congress Vice President Mukul Roy said.

“Police haven’t fired a single bullet. Outsiders who came to the spot to instigate violence shot the people. The way police was attacked yesterday, there would have been major issues if the Left government was at the helm,” he added.