Three people were killed when the crude bombs they were making accidentally went off at Bindapur village in West Bengal’s Murshidabad district on Tuesday morning. Three others were also injured in the incident.
Police said the bombs were supposed to be used in the run-up to the upcoming elections.
Two of the victims were identified as Minar Sheikh and Bashir Sheikh (both in their 30s), but there was no information on the third.
An officer with the Bharatpur police station said the incident occurred around 4.30 am. Over 100 crude bombs and a substantial amount of raw materials were recovered from the spot, he added.
Sources told HT that two groups owing allegiance to Kashem Sheikh and Taher Sheikh, both leaders of rival Trinamool Congress factions, had fought for control over the area a few days ago. The bombs were probably being made by one of these factions in preparation for another clash.
Factionalism has been a prominent feature of the Trinamool Congress almost since its inception. Despite various party leaders – including chief minister Mamata Banerjee – asking workers to sink their differences and work for the common cause, the problem couldn’t be reined in.
Hafizul and Tarik Hussain, both brothers of Khairashole gram panchayat member Jabir Hussain, were killed under similar circumstances in neighbouring Birbhum district last month. The blast had brought down parts of the building in which the explosives were being made.
A couple of years ago, over 800 crude bombs were found stockpiled at a primary health centre in Birbhum district.