BJP candidate kicked during Bengal bypolls, shows footage

Joy Prakash Majumdar
TV footages showed Majumdar being beaten, kicked and pushed into a bush by miscreants in Nadia district | Videograb

West Bengal BJP vice president Jay Prakash Majumdar was seen being assaulted by agitators during bypolls in the Karimpur assembly segment on Monday (November 25), in what was alleged to be an attack orchestrated by the ruling TMC workers.

Bypolls were held in three assembly segments in the state — Karimpur, Kharagpur Sadar and Kaliaganj — on Monday. Around 64.35% of over seven lakh electorate cast votes in the bypolls till 3 pm, an Election Commission official said. The results will be declared on November 28.

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TV footages showed Majumdar, who is also a candidate from Karimpur segment, being beaten, kicked and pushed into a bush by miscreants at Phipulkhola area of Nadia district. Holding TMC “goons” responsible for the act, he said, “Wounds would heal but the incident was a clear sign of the end of democracy” in West Bengal.

Several TMC supporters raised “go back” slogans at another poll booth the BJP leader visited during the day. The police had to resort to baton charge to disperse the mob.

Majumdar alleged that the TMC had planted fake voters in the area to rig the polls. “But all these will not demoralise me and I will continue to visit all booths. I have complained to the Election Commission,” Majumdar said. Denying the allegations as “baseless”, the Nadia district unit of the TMC said locals had attacked Majumdar as they were angry with him for “vitiating” the poll atmosphere.

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Senior BJP leader Mukul Roy shot off a letter to Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora, seeking his intervention into the matter and accused the TMC of “turning the election into farce in connivance with police and administration”. “Today 50 TMC goons surrounded, kicked and pushed Joy Prakash Majumdar. We demand the immediate removal of the SP and the Additional SP,” he was later quoted as saying.

Union Minister Babul Supriyo also condemned the incident and sought an apology from the TMC. State minister and TMC leader Rajib Banerjee said the incident was pre-planned by the saffron party “to gain sympathy on the day of polls”. According to sources, the Election Commission has sought reports about the incident.

Meanwhile, in Kaliaganj constituency, BJP candidate Kamal Chandra Sarkar was allegedly seen helping his wife cast her vote. The TMC has lodged a complaint with the poll panel,which said that the matter was being looked into.

(With inputs from agencies)