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Four BJP supporters arrested for murder in Bengal poll violence, party says falsely implicated

Death of Dildar Khan on April 23, the last day of submission of nomination papers for Bengal rural polls, had triggered a war of words between the ruling Trinamool Congress and the BJP.

kolkata Updated: Apr 25, 2018 22:40 IST
Koushik Dutta
Koushik Dutta
Hindustan Times, Kolkata
Bengal rural polls,Bengal rural poll violence,BJP
Trinamool Congress and BJP activists clash at Karidhya village in Birbhum district of West Bengal on April 23.(PTI Photo)

Police arrested four people in connection with the death of Dildar Khan, who was killed in Suri of Bengal’s Birbhum district on April 23, the last day of submission of nomination papers for the rural polls in the state.

Accused Babul Sheikh, Sheikh Saiful, Goutam Kora and Asit Halder were arrested on Tuesday night and produced in Suri court on Wednesday, which sent them to police custody for seven days.

The four were booked under IPC sections 302 (murder), 147 (punishment for rioting), 148 (rioting armed with deadly weapon), 149 ( unlawful assembly ), 120 (B) (criminal conspiracy) as well as sections 25, 28 and 35 of the Arms Act.

“They were arrested on the basis of a complaint (filed by Tahid Khan, the victim’s father) and our investigation. We will interrogate them further in our custody. Others will also be arrested,” said N Sudheer Kumar, district police superintendent of Birbhum.

Ramkrishna Roy, the president of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Birbhum district, said the four were supporters of the party but claimed they were falsely implicated.

“Khan was our man and he was killed by TMC-backed goons. However, we are surprised that police arrested our supporters,” said Roy.

Read | Man who lost wife in 2013 Bengal poll violence campaigns for peace

Khan’s death had triggered a war of words between the leaders of the ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC) and the BJP.

On Monday, the BJP claimed Khan was its minority unit’s district president.

However, TMC’s urban development minister Firhad Hakim and Birbhum district chief Anubrata Mondal said he was their supporter.

The father of the deceased initially told the media that ruling party workers shot his son dead in front of his eyes.

He also alleged that the panchayat pradhan from TMC, Prabir Dhar, had a role in his son’s death.

However, within 90 minutes, he appeared at a press conference and said in the presence of TMC’s Mondal that his son was a worker of the ruling party.

First Published: Apr 25, 2018 22:37 IST