Hours after West Bengal Finance Minister Amit Mitra and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee were heckled by leftist protesters in New Delhi on Tuesday, offices of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) were attacked in different parts of West Bengal, including in Kolkata.
The district headquarters of the CPI(M) in at least three districts — South 24 Parganas, Hooghly and Darjeeling — were ransacked allegedly by Trinamool Congress activists. In Kolkata, several local committee offices and those of affiliated organisations were attacked in the Jadavpur, Beleighata and Manicktola areas. Nearly eight supporters and party workers had to be hospitalised for the injuries they suffered in these attacks. The offices were ransacked, furniture smashed and in certain places attempts were made to set them on fire.
Earlier in the day, Ms. Banerjee reached Yojana Bhawan on Parliament Street, along with her Ministers, to attend the annual State Plan meeting when activists of the Students Federation of India, the CPI(M), the Janwadi Mahila Samiti and the Democratic Youth Federation of India blocked their way, raising slogans. They protested against the death of SFI member Sudipta Gupta in police custody in Kolkata last week.
Apprehending that the situation might get out of hand, security personnel advised Ms. Banerjee not to step out of her vehicle. But she came out and walked into the building, surrounded by policemen, even as protesters waved placards. The protesters then confronted Mr. Amit Mitra, and some of them pushed and heckled him when he tried to enter the building. Mr. Mitra’s kurta was torn in the jostling.
Cancels meeting with PM
Ms. Banerjee raised questions over the security arrangements. She fell ill and was later administered oxygen while Amit Mitra was put under observation in AIIMS for some medical tests. Ms. Banerjee cancelled her meeting with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in the evening.