Even as tension prevailed in the Tehatta area of Nadia district, a day after the death of one person in police firing, the Opposition on Thursday challenged the claim made by the West Bengal government that police were forced to fire in self-defence.
Referring to the footage of violence shown by local television channels, chairperson of the Left Front Committee, Biman Bose, said there was no evidence that police were attacked.
“I am 100 per cent sure that had the video footage [of the violence] not been shown all would have denied the police firing. Those in the State government including the Chief Minister would have asserted that there was no firing,” Mr. Bose said.
Mr. Bose said the government should make comments based on facts and not draw conclusions before the inquiry was over.
“Firing in self-defence was a mere justification of the police action but no evidence has yet emerged yet to prove the claim,” State Congress general secretary Omprakash Mishra said.
State BJP president Rahul Sinha said initially the police denied reports of firing but after footage was aired they admitted to the incident.
The government ordered a magisterial inquiry into the violence and police firing.
Meanwhile, Sub-Divisional Police Officer (SDPO) Shailesh admitted that he had fired three rounds.
“After exhausting all options and to exercise my right of private defence of my life and other police personnel present with me I had to open fire,” he told a local television channel
Union Minister of State for Urban Development and Congress leader Deepa Dasmunsi said she had informed the party high command of the incident and would visit the area on Friday.
Locals alleged that the police raided houses, dragged people out of their homes and assaulted the women after the incident.
The Left Front has called a bandh on Friday. The Congress will observe a “black day” on the day.
A delegation of the MLAs of the Left Front on way to Tehatta was advised by the district and police authorities not to visit the area.