BJP leader attacked in Bengal allegedly by TMC workers; phone, gold chain snatched

Samik Bhattacharya, a former legislator of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was attacked, allegedly by workers of the ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC), in the Falta area of Diamond Harbour in South 24 Parganas district on Tuesday afternoon.

The windshield of Bhattacharya’s car was completely shattered by bricks thrown by the attackers. Bhattacharya was allegedly kicked and thrashed and his mobile phone and gold chain were snatched. The BJP alleged that his driver was thrashed too and left with bleeding injuries.

Bhattacharya is one of the oldest and most known faces of the present leadership. Known for his oratory skill, Bhattacharya regularly takes part in debates on prime television channels on behalf of the party.

The BJP leader was on his way to attend an agitation led by party state president Dilip Ghosh when the car was stopped by more than 100 people, the party alleged. Ghosh, too, was shown black flags by TMC workers at Diamond Habour.

“Our party leaders are being selectively targeted,” said BJP state vice-president Ritesh Tiwari and referred to the murder of BJP leader Manish Shukla at Titagarh in North 24 Parganas district on Sunday night.

Bhattacharya was unwell and could not be contacted. Officers of Falta police station refused to divulge details of the alleged attack.

Chief minister Mamata Banerjee’s nephew Abhishek Banerjee is the Lok Sabha member from Diamond Harbour.

Urban development minister Firhad Hakim said, “We have to find out the details and see if TMC men were involved or whether it was a fallout of intra-party rivalry in the BJP.”

Saukat Mollah, TMC’s youth wing president in South 24 Parganas, told the local media that Bhattacharya witnessed the outburst of people’s anger against the BJP following the murder of a Dalit woman at Hathras in Uttar Pradesh.

“People have broken the car now. Next time they may break bones,” said Mollah.

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