Drawing an analogy between Trinamool Congress activists engaging in violence and the “Black Shirts” of fascist Italy and “storm troopers” of Nazi Germany, Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly Surya Kanta Mishra asked Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday to restrain her party supporters from committing acts of violence and repression.
Dr. Mishra’s comments were made on reports that Trinamool Congress workers were forcibly closing down establishments including schools whose employees had not reported for work on Wednesday in view of the strike called by trade unions.
He also referred to the panchayat official whose ear was partially chopped for not going to work and described it as “an act of cruelty reminiscent of the Middle Ages”.
“It appears that a strike is being enforced by Trinamool Congress in schools, markets and transport sector and one does not know how long it will continue,” he said, adding that activists of the party were forcing for an indefinite period the shutdown of those establishments that had remained closed on Wednesday in support of the strike.
“What is happening will not help in restoring work culture in Bengal,” he said, referring to Ms Banerjee’s claim that her government had been able to restore work culture in the State.
“The State Government is violating the Constitution under the leadership of the Chief Minister and instances of such violation are growing by the day,” said Dr Mishra, who is also a member of the Polit Bureau of the Communist Party of India (Marxist).
On Ms Banerjee’s decision to reward those who have kept their shops and establishments open on Wednesday, he said he hoped that no such order would be issued by the State administration.
“If there is any such order then we will understand that officials have forgotten the law and the Constitution,” Dr Mishra said, adding that the officials in the State administration should learn a lesson from the fates of former Commissioner of City Police and other IAS and WBCS officers.
Certain officers including former city police chief R. K. Pachnanda who were considered close to Ms Banerjee were transferred recently allegedly because they failed to comply with her wishes.