The proposed public meeting of union road transport minister Nitin Gadkari in Malda on January 18 was shifted to the neighbouring district of North Dinajpur after the district administration made it clear that they will not allow the meeting anywhere in the district.
While the Kaliachak incident continued to reverberate in the state, three were arrested on Wednesday with fake Indian currency with face value of Rs 4 lakh. During the day operations were also launched against illegal poppy cultivators, and BSF began assisting the exercise for the first time.
Incidentally, the state police found out that fake currency racketeers and poppy cultivators used the gathering on January 3 to launch a premeditated attack on the police station.
“Malda district administration isn’t ready to allot us any ground to organise the public meeting in this district. So, the state leaders have decided to shift the conference to Buniadpur of South Dinajpur. But the date remains unchanged,” Malda district BJP president Subrata Kundu told HT.
On Wednesday BJP leaders also told HT they will demand NIA investigation into the Kaliachak incident. They claimed that without the central agency the truth behind the violence will never be unearthed.
“A team of BJP MPs has already submitted a report at Delhi, but on January 18 we are going to submit another report to Nitinji. We will demand NIA probe of the Kaliachak incident. On January 4 a BJP team visited Kaliachak and managed to obtain some video clips and still photographs. We are going to hand over all that to Nitinji along with a detailed report,” added Kundu.
On January 3 a crowd of thousands gathered at Kaliachak in Malda district (about 300 km from Kolkata) to organise a religious protest and soon the gathering turned violent with the agitators setting fire to the police station and a number of vehicles inside the police station campus.
On January 11, Malda district administration forced a BJP fact finding team comprising three MPs and two state BJP leaders to return from Malda station when they were heading for Kaliachak. On the same day Malda police resisted a CPI-M MP from reaching the spot citing that section 144 of CRPC is in force at Kaliachak to avoid any untoward incident.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has already claimed that the vandalism unleashed on Kaliachak police station in Malda on January 3 was not a communal incident.
“Bangladeshi terrorists, counterfeit note smugglers, drug smugglers have a plan to make Kaliachak a ‘liberated zone’. As a part of their plan many important documents at Kaliachak PS have been set ablaze,” added Kundu.