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Wednesday, Aug 21, 2019

Did Lord Ram ask people to carry pistols and swords, wonders Mamata Banerjee

BJP’s Mahila Morcha chief Locket Chatterjee has been booked for participating in a Ram Navami procession with a trident.

india Updated: Mar 26, 2018 15:21 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Kolkata, Hindustan Times
West Bengal Bharatiya Janata Party Mahila Morcha chief Locket Chatterjee holds a trishul during a religious procession to celebrate Ram Navami in Birbhum on Sunday.
West Bengal Bharatiya Janata Party Mahila Morcha chief Locket Chatterjee holds a trishul during a religious procession to celebrate Ram Navami in Birbhum on Sunday. (PTI Photo )

Stepping up her rhetoric against the Hindutva brigade for brandishing arms during Ram Navami processions in various parts of West Bengal on Sunday, chief minister Mamata Banerjee wondered whether Lord Ram asked his followers to carry pistols and swords.

“Did Lord Ram ask his followers to stage processions with pistols and swords? A group of hooligans raising a bogey are roaming around in the streets. Will the administration sit quiet?” the chief minister asked during an administrative review meeting in South 24 Parganas district on Monday.

SK Sajahan, 50, was killed and five others injured in a clash between police and Bajrang Dal activists in Bengal’s Purulia district on Sunday when police tried to stop Bajrang Dal activists from staging the rally brandishing arms.

“If police get into an understanding and don’t take actions against them, I shall take action against the police,” Mamata warned.

The chief minister said she saw a picture in a Bengali newspaper of a participant in a procession carrying a pistol.

“We have collected videos and evidence against those creating trouble on Sunday. We are taking strongest possible action against them,” said director general of police, Surajit Kar Purkayastha, who was present in the meeting.

“If a person has died, I regard him as my brother. I don’t need to find out his religion,” said the chief minister.

The reverberations of Ram Navami celebrations continued in Bengal on Monday with a clash erupting between the police and a group of saffron supporters who were trying to take out a procession in Kandi in Murshidabad district.

In Rampurhat of Birbhum district, police suo motu lodged an FIR against BJP Mahila Morcha president Locket Chatterjee for participating in a procession with a trident. Sections of Arms Act were slapped against her.

“Our procession started at 8:30 am from the Radhagobinda temple at Kandi. We had taken permission for it. But in the way, some Trinamool supporters carrying weapons entered the procession and when the rally reached a point in front of the police station, they began throwing stones, triggering caning by the police. Four of our supporters had to be hospitalised and 50 others were injured,” said Iman Kalyan Mukherjee, BJP president of Bharatpur block I block.

Local Trinamool MLA Apurba Sarkar said no Trinamool supporters were involved in the procession.

The sub divisional police officer of Kandi also said that no permission was given for the procession.

Incidentally, last week, the chief minister relaxed a blanket ban on carrying weapons during Ram Navami processions, and said that only a few processions that have been organised for decades with weapons should be allowed to carry arms.

First Published: Mar 26, 2018 15:20 IST

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