BJP fact-finding team submits reports on violence during Nabanna Chalo protest, recommends CBI probe
New Delhi: A five-member Bharatiya Janata Party fact-finding committee set up to investigate the violence resulting in several party workers getting injured in West Bengal during the Nabanna Chalo Abhiyan, submitted its report to the BJP national president JP Nadda on Saturday.
The committee headed by former Uttar Pradesh DGP and BJP Rajya Sabha MP Brij Lal has recommended that cases of violence need to be investigated by a central agency like CBI.
The committee raised questions about the role of the state police and alleged that it was "hand in glove" with the state government.
"Fair enquiry is not possible by State police as they are hand in gloves with their political masters, the ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC), led by Mamata Banerjee, who is also the Home Minister. The committee recommends that the entire episode should be enquired into by a central agency like CBI. National Human Rights Commission should also go to Kolkata to conduct an enquiry into gross human rights violations and brutality by Kolkata Police and TMC goons," the committee said in its report.
Brutal and unparallel violence was perpetrated by police officers with face covers, without their name tags and many of whom were in civilian clothes, along with TMC goons, the committee claimed.
"The State arbitrarily imposed Section 144 CrPC orders at Satragachi and Howrah Maidan to stifle the opposition voice. Although no such orders under Section 144 CrPC was issued for the assembly of protestors at Lal Bazaar and MG Road, these places saw unprecedented violence perpetrated by the StateGovt Machinery," the report said.
It further said the violence saw around 750 citizens and BJP workers injured and many of whom are admitted to the ICU not just in the hospitals of West Bengal but also in those of the neighbouring states.
Before and during the protest, the report claimed around 550 arbitrary arrests were made and 60 workers are still in police custody. And the whereabouts of around 45 workers are still not known, the committee said in its report.
The committee condemned the remark made during the violence by TMC MP Abhishek Banerjee.
Banerjee had stated that he would have shot the protestors in their head if he was present at the site, referring to the alleged assault on certain Kolkata police officials.
"This very statement of the second-in-command of the TMC party reveals the fascist mindset of their Party as well as the fact that the illegal and brutal use of force by the State police on September 13 had the sanction of the political bosses of the TMC," the committee report said.
It said the top brass of the police administration, who are "hand in gloves with their political masters", have conspired to use the police force to target BJP workers and create an atmosphere of fear and terror to break the backbone of political opposition.
"False cases had been registered against BJP workers and they are being harassed even now," the report said naming certain police officials in its findings. It alleged Siddhnath Gupta, IPS, Damayanti Sen, IPS and Praveen Kumar Tripathi, IPS were publicly seen to have "grossly ignored their duties and acted in a partisan manner against BJP karyakartas".
Expressing satisfaction over the findings of the committee, Brij Lal told ANI, "We have done a detailed investigation and as always what is come to the fore is that there is no rule of law in Bengal and it is 'jungle raj' by Mamata Banerjee. While we recommend a probe by CBI and NHRC, we are also hopeful that the Calcutta High Court will take a serious note of the violence and demand a suo moto probe."
Another member of the committee and a prominent leader from Punjab Sunil Jakhar told ANI, "Our finding is that it was state-supported hooliganism and barbarism on our BJP workers. It is sad to see the law enforcers hand in glove with the ruling party."
On September 15, BJP chief JP Nadda appointed a fact-finding committee of five senior party leaders including Brij Lal, Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, Aparajita Sarangi Sameer Oraon and Sunil Jakhar. The Committee visited Kolkata on September 17 to conduct an inquiry.
The fact-finding team interacted at length with party workers of West Bengal. It also spoke to some non-political people as well as a few executive authorities like the Station House Officer (SHO) and his colleagues at Hare Street Police Station. (ANI)