"If anyone insults Bangla’s heritage, I will not spare them”, Mamata threatens BJP
Kolkata, May 14: Social reformer Iswar Chandra Vidyasagar's statue at Vidyasagar College was on Tuesday damaged during the clash between BJP and TMC supporters. The clashes broke out during Amit Shah's mega roadshow in Kolkata.
Both the BJP and Bengal's ruling Trinamool Congress accused each other for the violence. Large numbers of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) members clashed with Trinamool Chhatra Parishad (TMCP) supporters at College Street.
As the BJP roadshow was passing in front of the college, the TMCP supporters showed black flags, shouted anti-BJP slogans and hurled stones. The BJP supporters retaliated and threw the stones back. TMCP supporters were separated from them by the iron gates of the university campus and a wall of policemen. Contingents of Kolkata Police deployed for the roadshow swung into action and were seen chasing away the warring groups.
While Shah escaped unhurt, he was forced to cut short the roadshow and had to be escorted to safety by police.
West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee visited the college to personally inspect the damage. Mamata refused to talk to the media and went inside the college. She collected the broken pieces Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar statue.
"If anyone insults Bangla's heritage, I will not spare them. After doing this, do they think people will like them? Bangla is good without all this. There is no need for them to come and create trouble. Modi and Amit Shah have done nothing except creating trouble. Vidyasagar's statue cannot be damaged like this, they cannot set fire like this. I will not sit idle. I will take steps and now I am full of anger. I will not take this lying down," said Banerjee in a statement after she visited Vidyasagar College.
Shah blamed 'TMC goons' for the violence and said it is necessary to oust TMC from West Bengal.
"Today the way BJP's road show got a response in Kolkata with almost every citizen attending it, TMC's goons were frustrated and so attacked it. I would like to congratulate BJP workers as even after such chaos the roadshow continued and concluded at the planned place and time," Shah told ANI.
"I condemn the violence that Mamata Banerjee's party is doing. I would like to appeal to the people of Bengal to give a response to this violence with their votes in the last phase. It is necessary to oust TMC once to put an end to violence in the state," he added.
Rao and others met the EC late on Tuesday evening over clashes at Shah's roadshow. The delegation also demanded that Banerjee barred from campaigning.