“Against violence, terror across the State by CPI (M)”

Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee has called for a “continuous programme of agitations” after April 15 (Bengali New Year's Day) against the violence and terror allegedly let loose across the State by the Communist Party of India (Marxist). “We shall take our agitation to the streets and speak through the people, a language that the CPI(M) listens to…We have been making repeated appeals to the State government to ensure restoration of peace in the State, but it is not living up to its responsibilities,” Ms. Banerjee said here on Friday.

Earlier in the day, on the question of violence in West Bengal, Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee said in New Delhi that he has been telling Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram that the Trinamool and the Maoists are “working hand-in-hand” in West Bengal. This, he pointed out, has become “a serious problem in the State.”

Accusing the CPI(M) of being responsible for the violence that resulted in the killings of Trinamool workers and supporters, besides others, in the last nine months, Ms. Banerjee said the ruling party would be wrong to think “that it will come back to power after more than 32 years of misrule, propped up by the use of guns.”

Accusing the administration of being partisan, she said the law and order situation in the State would not have been so grim had “the State government acted with greater responsibility.”

“The spine of the administration has been broken. There is no administration and the police is reduced to agents of the CPI(M),” she alleged.

Ms. Banerjee, who has been accusing the CPI(M) of using the police to unleash terror in parts of the State where security operations are engaged in flushing out Left-wing extremists, said camps had been set up by activists of the party where arms were stockpiled.

“Arms have flooded West Bengal. All this is happening under the instructions of the Chief Minister.”

Later in the evening, senior Congress leaders went to Ms. Banerjee's residence to sort out the issue of seat sharing between the two parties for the elections to 81 civic bodies across the State scheduled for May 30.

“The alliance [of the two parties] has existed and will continue to do so….We shall work together to combat the terror let loose by the CPI(M) in the State,” Ms. Banerjee said after the meeting.

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