West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s election rally in Barasat, scheduled for today, was cancelled due to a clash in dates with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s public meeting at the same location.
The Chief Minister’s rally was canceled after BJP and SPG (Special Protection Group) raised objections citing security reasons. The rally in the North 24 Parganas district has been rescheduled for tomorrow.
The move could become the latest flashpoint between the Trinamool Congress in the state and BJP, which is giving direct fight to the ruling party in the Assembly elections, in the continuing acrimony between the two parties.
The ruling TMC and the opposition BJP in the state are already locked in a war of words over violence in Cooch Behar district during the fourth phase of polling in the state on Saturday in which five people were killed, including four in CISF firing.
Banerjee on Sunday called the firing incident a “genocide” and said that PM Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah are incompetent. She also sought Shah’s resignation owing responsibility for the incident “which is dastardly, cold-blooded and unprecedented”.
PM Modi also attacked Banerjee over the violence and said accused her of instigating people against the central forces, sensing defeat.
“What happened in Cooch Behar is unfortunate and sad. I extend my condolences to the bereaved families and urge the Election Commission to take stern action against those responsible. Mamata Didi and her TMC goons have become jittery because of ground swell of support for BJP,” he had said at an election rally in North Bengal’s Siliguri.
As per the preliminary report submitted by the Election Commision, a huge mob of around 350-400 people had gheraoed the central forces, following which they fired in “self-defence”.
By Ayush Kashyap