Monday, Aug 19, 2019 | Last Update : 12:17 PM IST

TMC behind West Bengal violence: Amit Shah

PTI
Published : May 16, 2019, 4:02 am IST
Updated : May 16, 2019, 6:06 am IST

The violence apparently began after suspected TMC supporters hurled stones at the BJP convoy from inside the hostel of Vidyasagar College.

Union ministers Nirmala Sitharaman, Vijay Goel, Harsh Vardhan and Jitender Singh take part in a protest against the TMC in New Delhi. (Photo: Pritam Bandyopadhyay)
 Union ministers Nirmala Sitharaman, Vijay Goel, Harsh Vardhan and Jitender Singh take part in a protest against the TMC in New Delhi. (Photo: Pritam Bandyopadhyay)

New Delhi: BJP chief Amit Shah Wednesday blamed West Bengal's ruling Trinamul Congress for violence during his roadshow in Kolkata and accused the Election Commission of “double standards” for remaining a “mute spectator” to rigging and violation of the poll code in the state.

He rejected TMC's allegation that BJP workers vandalised a bust of educationist and social reformer Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar, claiming the regional party was behind it.

The countdown to chief minister Mamata Banerjee’s days in power will begin on May 23, when general election results will be declared, Mr Shah warned.

At a press conference a day after the violence, he said it would have been difficult for him to survive the attack on his convoy but for the security provided by the CRPF, a central police force.

“I want to tell the Election Commission that it has become a mute spectator to attempts to rig polls in West Bengal. It should immediately intervene. History-sheeters... Are arrested during elections across the country. In Bengal, they are released after furnishing a bond. What is this double standard from the EC? Why is it silent,” he asked.

Mr Shah said election observers in their reports have said polls in the state cannot be conducted fairly till such miscreants are arrested but the EC did not act. It raises a lot of questions on the election watchdog's impartiality, he said.

BJP and TMC supporters clashed on the streets of Kolkata on Tuesday, during a massive roadshow of Shah who had to cut short the event mid-way due to the violence.

The violence apparently began after suspected TMC supporters hurled stones at the BJP convoy from inside the hostel of Vidyasagar College. Furious BJP workers retaliated and during the clash, a bust of the polymath and philosopher inside the campus was damaged.

The election in West Bengal has been marred by incidents of violence and targeted attacks on rival party candidates.

Hitting back at TMC’s charge that the BJP was behind the violence, Mr Shah said his party has been contesting elections in every state and is in power in 16, but it is only in West Bengal that violence is being seen.

Mr Shah also alleged that Ms Banerjee has issued threats in her speeches but has not been barred from campaigning.

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Tags: amit shah, ishwar chandra vidyasagar