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The political violence against the Opposition, especially members of BJP and Hindu organisations, has reached an unprecedented level in the State of West Bengal. From politically-motivated murders to staging suicides, the BJP has been at the receiving end of the high-handedness of the Trinamool Congress workers. Bolstered by political patronage, they have unleashed a state of terror in West Bengal with violence and blasts taking place in several parts of the State every month. This indicates that the activities of crude bomb-making have accelerated in the state.
On Tuesday, a massive explosion took place at a club in Dubrajpur in Birbhum district of West Bengal near the residence of Trinamool Congress (TMC) MLA Naresh Chandra Bauri. As per reports, the BJP has alleged that explosive substances were hoarded by the TMC workers at the club, which eventually led to the explosion. On the other hand, the TMC has dismissed the charges and claimed that its workers were watching IPL and bursting ‘firecrackers’ in celebration.
Blast at a police station in Birbhum
Earlier on August 10, an explosion took place inside the Dubrajpur police station. District police chief Shyam Singh stated, “We came to know about an explosion inside the Dubrajpur police station. We are investigating the case to find out what actually happened there,” said Shyam Singh, the district police chief.”
During the incident, a visitor to the police station was badly injured. He was then rushed to a private hospital for further medical treatment. Surprisingly, senior police officials came to know much later about the explosion as it was not reported immediately. In its defence, the police had claimed that no explosives are stored in the almirah and that all ‘seized items’ are securely kept in malkhana. “We suspect a battery or condenser of a ceiling fan exploded,” a police official informed. According to the sources cited by the Telegraph, the building and the electrical wiring of the police station was old and worn out.
Explosion at a healtcentre in Hetampur
Again on October this year, a blast took place at a one-storey homoeopathic clinic in Champanagari village in Hetampur gram panchayat in Dubrajpur block in Birbhum district of West Bengal. As per locals, crude bombs were stocked at a two-storeyed building by miscreants that resulted in the explosion. However, the police claimed that the blast took place due to a leakage in the LPG cylinder that was stocked in the clinic. Reportedly, one of the rooms, where the cylinder was kept, was frequently used by locals to store utensils and cylinders for public events.
During the blast, two walls of the building had collapsed and the iron door became detached. The clinic was constructed on the land of Hetampur gram panchayat through crowdfunding. “The explosion happened in the room attached to the free health centre. The police are investigating the matter and will take action according to law,” claimed Panchayat chief Mohammed Jasimuddin.
TMC insiders have conceded that there was a long tradition to hoard crude bombs in government buildings in Dubrajpur. “Crude bombs have become an integral part of the political clash. We have seized thousands of bombs in several police station areas of the district. However, the practice remains unchanged,” a police officer emphasised.
Bomb blast at a club in Kolkata
On October 13, another huge explosion took place at a three-storeyed Beleghata club, near Gandhi Bhavan in Kolkata, West Bengal. During the blast, which took place between 6:30 -6:45 am at Beleghata Gandhimath Friends Circle, the wall of the terrace was demolished along with the sewer pipeline and the asbestos roof. No casualties have been reported so far. According to ABP Ananda, traces of explosives were found on the rooftop. It was also reported that ‘sutlis‘ (threads), attached to explosives, was found lying in large quantities, on the road, beside the building.
Following the incident, the BJP slammed the Trinamool Congress of conspiring to stir up political violence in West Bengal. BJP National General Secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya tweeted, “Ahead of assembly elections, TMC wants to create anarchy in West Bengal. Today, we even saw the proof of it after a blast took place at a club on Beleghat main road. The roof of the club got destroyed and its remains fell to a far-off place. We have suspicions that a large number of explosives was hidden in the building.”
TMC workers and crude bombs
In May this year, the Bhagwanpur police had reportedly recovered 153 crude bombs from the backyard of one local resident and Trinamool Congress (TMC) supporter named Sheikh Kasemuddin in Lalpur village of East Midnapore District in West Bengal. Four people were arrested in connection with the case. While three of them were released after initial questioning, Kasemuddin was produced before the Kanthi Court on Saturday. He was sent to 14 days in judicial custody by the judge.
In July, crude bombs were hurled at BJP workers, prior to the scheduled public rally by BJP MP from Barrackpore, Arjun Singh. The incident took place in Shymnagar in North 24 Parganas in West Bengal. The State unit of the BJP reportedly wanted to take out a protest march against the rise of terror, perpetrated by the Trinamool Congress (TMC), in Bhatpara, following the attack on one of its members, and also against corruption in the distribution of relief to the victims of the cyclone Amphan. When BJP workers flocked to the protest site, an explosion took place at the spot. Reportedly, 4 people were injured during the attack. Even though the rally was postponed for some time, it was resumed afterwards.
Earlier in August, a 40-year-old TMC worker named Humayun Kabir died after sustaining grave injuries during an explosion caused while making crude bombs at the roof of his house, reported The Hindustan Times. The incident took place in the Shamshergunj area in the Murshidabad district of West Bengal. As per the report, the 10-year-old son of Humayun was also injured in the explosion. According to the sub-divisional police officer of Jangipur, Prasenjit Banerjee, Kabir was fatally injured while trying to make crude bombs.