Defying prohibitory orders, BJP delegation visits violence-hit Asansol

Babul Supriyo argues with a cop in Asansol on Thursday; the MP speaks to journalists

Babul Supriyo argues with a cop in Asansol on Thursday; the MP speaks to journalists

"Peace is paramount. I appeal to all sections of people and communities to stay away from violence", said Governor Tripathi.

"Being a minister, I can not violate rules", said Asansol MP Supriyo who also engaged in a verbal duel with police personnel surrounding his auto. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has however asserted that such behavior was unacceptable in her state and that her government would strongly deal with each miscreant.

One person was killed and two police officers suffered injuries on Monday when clashes broke out between two groups in Raniganj area of Bardhaman West district.

Prohibitory orders were imposed, while the internet services remained suspended in the area. I have come here with the message of peace and brotherhood.

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Senior Trinamool Congress leader and state Parliamentary Affairs Minister Partha Chatterjee, however, questioned the governor "visiting only selected areas".

"I had plans to visit Asansol and Raniganj two days earlier, but for certain reasons the visit did not materalise".

"People will question the governor about his visit to selected areas".

A four-member delegation of BJP MPs is scheduled to visit the Asansol-Raniganj area tomorrow and submit a report to BJP president Amit Shah.

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It had also said that with the dates for the panchayat polls announced and the model code of conduct being in force, it would not be able to provide ample security for the BJP delegation visiting Asansol.

On the way to the coal town of Asansol, the delegation was requested by the police to stop at Basra More and Kalipahari as prohibitory orders were in force in the area. While politicians have made irresponsible statements instead of brokering peace, it is the heartbreaking appeal of an Imam, who lost his son in the violence, that has brought tears in the eyes of the nation and helped restore peace in the region.

Caught off guard during the recent Asansol-Raniganj violence, the state is also planning to strengthen its ground-level intelligence gathering mechanism, the official told PTI.

According to a senior police officer privy to the development, apart from the traditional posting of DIB (District Intelligence Branch) officer in each police districts, the local civic volunteers of the police will also be used to collect information.

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