Sandeshkhali unrest | Section 144 imposed in vicinity of Basirhat SP office over BJP agitation

“The Orders were enforced under Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code from 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. to maintain law and order,” officials said.

February 13, 2024 04:15 pm | Updated 04:15 pm IST - Kolkata

Poultry and fish farms set on fire allegedly by villagers in Sandeshkhali, in North 24 Parganas district, in West Bengal. File

Poultry and fish farms set on fire allegedly by villagers in Sandeshkhali, in North 24 Parganas district, in West Bengal. File | Photo Credit: ANI

Prohibitory Orders were clamped on February 13 in the vicinity of the SP’s office in West Bengal’s Basirhat in view of a proposed agitation programme by the BJP over allegations of sexual harassment by women in Sandeshkhali block.

“The Orders were enforced under Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) from 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. to maintain law and order,” officials said. “A large number of police personnel have also been deployed outside the SP’s office in Basirhat to prevent any untoward incident,” they said. Sandeshkhali is under the purview of the Basirhat police district.

The State BJP had announced its leaders will gherao the SP office on Tuesday in protest against the situation in Sandeshkhali in North 24 Parganas district. Women in Sandeshkhali have been agitating for the last few days over alleged atrocities against them by Trinamool Congress (TMC) leader Shajahan Sheikh and his aides.

The protesters claim that Mr. Sheikh and his "gang" captured swathes of land by force, besides sexually harassing women in the area.

Mr. Sheikh, who has been absconding since last month after a team of the Enforcement Directorate (ED) that went to raid his house in Sandeshkhali in connection with a ration scam, was attacked by a mob.

Meanwhile, State BJP president Sukanta Majumdar said a party delegation will travel to Basirhat by train. "We will reach Basirhat, meet the SP and question him on the Sandeshkhali development. We shall demand punishment for the culprits,” he told reporters at Hridaypur railway station.

“We could have broken the barricades put up by the police, but our party will not do it... we don’t want to inconvenience the locals,” Mr. Majumdar said, when asked about the decision to travel by train.

On Monday, senior BJP leader Suvendu Adhikari and several other MLAs of the party were stopped from visiting Sandeshkhali. A Congress delegation, too, had reportedly been prevented from visiting the trouble-torn area on Tuesday.

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