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Sunday, Oct 20, 2019

TMC issues strong statement after Bengal guv rescues Babul Supriyo from JU

The statement issued by TMC’s secretary-general Partha Chatterjee late on Thursday alleged that Union minister of state for environment, forest and climate change, Babul Supriyo went to JU to attend a programme without informing the government and so did Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar.

india Updated: Sep 20, 2019 09:12 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Kolkata
Union Minister Babul Supriyo.
Union Minister Babul Supriyo.(PTI Photo)
         

West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar’s visit to Jadavpur University and his rescue of Union minister Babul Supriyo, who was assaulted inside the campus, was “most unfortunate and shocking”, the Trinamool Congress has said.

The statement issued by TMC’s secretary-general Partha Chatterjee late on Thursday alleged that Union minister of state for environment, forest and climate change, Babul Supriyo went to JU to attend a programme without informing the government and so did Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar.

Babul Supriyo was brought out of the campus by Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar, who is also JU’s chancellor, after he was heckled, pushed and his hair pulled by a group of students and stopped from leaving campus for hours. The incident has triggered a controversy as the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party slammed the government for not being able to control the situation.

The ruling party statement also alleged that the governor went to the campus despite chief minister Mamata Banerjee urging him on the telephone not to do so. Governor Dhankhar had called Mamata Banerjee, who was away in Delhi, on his way to the university on Thursday evening.

“The chief minister requested him several times that the governor being the constitutional head need not go at this moment. The CM requested him to give the government some time to peacefully solve the issue,” read the statement.

“The state police was waiting outside the university, but were unable to enter in the absence of any communication from the VC (vice-chancellor),” it said adding that the “incidents between BJP students wing and JU students” were “unfortunate”.

According to the TMC, the state police facilitated the exit of Supriyo and the governor out of the troubled spot.

The TMC also mentioned how the governor in a press statement said that the JU incident “is a very serious reflection on the law and order in the state” but “did not offer any comment on the vandalism perpetrated by Bharatiya Janata Party and Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad goons in the Jadavpur University campus”.

“Neither TMC nor police are involved in the incident. It is absolutely with BJP and Leftist union students versus BJP leader,” said the statement.

The ruling party statement’s also “strongly opposed” the governor’s political views.

The Mamata Banerjee-led party also compared Thursday’s incidents with the violence during the rally of BJP chief Amit Shah in front of Calcutta University before the Lok Sabha elections and the desecration of the bust of social reformer and educator Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar.

Reacting to the statement, Babul Supriyo said the administration was aware of the situation, but could not do anything. “Who would have rescued me?” Supriyo asked.

The BJP’s national secretary Rahul Sinha also weighed in.

“The minister was assaulted. He was detained for hours. Those who could not find a solution to the situation are now trying to criticise the governor’s visit to the campus,” Sinha said.

Earlier on Thursday, however, leaders of all parties including the TMC had criticised the heckling of Supriyo at the campus.

“It is unthinkable that a Union minister can be heckled and harassed inside a university campus. It gives an idea of the law and order situation in the state,” said Dilip Ghosh, chief of the West Bengal unit of the BJP.

“No one can be heckled and manhandled in this manner. We are condemning the incident,” Trinamool Congress leader and member of the Mamata Banerjee cabinet Tapas Ray said.

Congress’ state unit president Somen Mitra and Left legislator Sujan Chakraborty, too, disapproved of the students detaining and manhandling Babul Supriyo.

First Published: Sep 20, 2019 09:12 IST

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