'Nabanna Chalo': No chemical used in cannon water, says West Bengal Chief Secretary
Kolkata, Oct 8: The West Bengal government on Thursday said that the BJP's march to the state secretariat Nabanna was carried out without permission and it was held against permissible parameters of the Pandemic Act.
Chief Secretary Alapan Bandopadhyay praised the police for controlling the situation patiently despite instigations.
Bandyopadhyay said,''The applicant last evening had mentioned several rallies & said, each rally will have around 25,000 youth. If each rally had to be allowed then that would have been a travesty as per the lockdown norms.''
Asked about the blue coloured water sprayed on BJP workers from water cannons during the march, Bandopadhyay said it is the same colour that is used during the Holi festival.
'' No chemical was used in cannon water and it is wrong information.The intent globally to use coloured water is to identify a person post dispersal for further necessary action as per the law if required,'' he said.
Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad had earlier said,''BJP strongly condemns barbaric treatment by Bengal Police of senior party leaders. We would like very politely say to Mamata Ji & TMC, by using Police & lathis you won't succeed in stopping BJP's expansion. Around 1500 BJP workers have been injured.''
''I have been told that the water (water cannons) had some chemical in it which is why people have been vomiting,'' he further said.
Clashes broke out between the West Bengal Police and BJP workers as the saffron party activists tried to break through barricades during their march towards state secretariat Nabanna on Thursday, police said.
Thousands of BJP workers from Kolkata and Howrah began marching towards Nabanna to protest the "worsening" law and order in the state.
Police personnel resorted to lathi-charge and used tear gas and water cannons on the BJP workers at Santragachi in Howrah district, causing injuries to BJP state vice- president Raju Banerjee and MP Jyotirmoy Singh Mahato. The law enforcers also resorted to baton-charge in Hastings area in Kolkata.
Four major rallies, two each from Kolkata and Howrah, will move towards Nabanna in Shibpur in Howrah district, BJP sources said.
The ruling Trinamool Congress government in the state on Wednesday denied permission to the programme citing the Pandemic Act and stating that democratic rallies within "permissible parameters" of only 100 participants will be allowed.
The state government has also announced that Nabanna will be closed for two days from October 8 for "sanitisation".