Lok Sabha election 2019: BJP’s Arjun Singh alleges attack by Trinamool ‘goondas’ in Bengal’s Barrackpore
The BJP’s candidate in West Bengal’s Barrackpore parliamentary constituency Arjun Singh alleged he was “attacked by goondas” of the Trinamool Congress on Monday during the fifth phase of polling in the Lok Sabha election.
Television news channels showed Singh scuffling even as the BJP leader’s personal security guards tried to intervene. He was also shown fighting with a policeman. The incident happened in Mohanpur, about 29km to the north of state capital Kolkata.
“I was attacked by TMC goons while I was escorting some men (BJP supporters) who were being prevented from casting their votes,” alleged Singh.
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He also claimed that the ruling Trinamool Congress party brought toughs from outside to assault him as he showed his injury to the mouth.
“It happened in front of the police. The inspector-in-charge of Titagarh police station was a mute spectator,” alleged Singh.
He called officials of the Election Commission to lodge a complaint.
Some locals also alleged that Singh’s supporters attacked them.
Singh got embroiled in a heated exchange in another booth in Mohanpur with a man, purportedly the polling agent of TMC, soon after the incident. The agent was shouting that the BJP candidate had no right to enter the booth as Singh said he had the right to get inside.
Outside the booth, Singh told the media that he had gone there to facilitate the return of the BJP’s polling agent, who was turned out.
Reactions from the Trinamool were not available immediately.
Barrackpore is the most sensitive constituency among the seven Lok Sabha seats going to the polls on Monday. As many as 55 companies of central forces have been deployed in this constituency.
Sporadic clashes were reported in West Bengal, especially from Asansol, in the fourth phase of the general elections last week. Babul Supriyo’s car was vandalised in Asansol last week allegedly by stone-throwing Trinamool Congress supporters. The minister escaped unharmed with only the rear glass of the vehicle being damaged.
The poll watchdog had directed the state police to register an FIR against Supriyo for allegedly trespassing into polling booth number 199 and threatening a polling agent and an officer.