- Suvendu Adhikari said he would move the court if he is stopped from visiting Howrah
- A day earlier, West Bengal BJP chief was also stopped from visiting the district
- Protests had erupted in several parts of Howrah district after Friday prayers
Prophet row: A day after West Bengal BJP chief Sukanta Majumdar was stopped by the police from visiting violence-affected areas in Howrah district citing the current law and order situation, Leader of Opposition Suvendu Adhikari headed on a collision course with the West Bengal Police on Sunday with the law enforcers asking the BJP leader not to visit parts of violence-hit Howrah district where prohibitory orders have been clamped.
Majumdar had claimed on Saturday that police erected barricades outside his residence in New Town on the northeastern fringes of Kolkata as he was getting ready to leave for the Howrah district. A day later on Sunday, the Nandigram MLA, Suvendu Adhikari, retorted that he would move the court if he is also stopped from visiting the riot-affected areas.
A letter, issued by the officer-in-charge of Kanthi Police Station at Adhikari’s hometown in Purba Medinipur district, stated that concern over his security was the main reason for asking him not to visit parts of Howrah district where Section 144 of CrPC has been imposed. “I will visit our party offices in Howrah district that were ransacked. Police has asked me not to visit areas where Section 144 of CrPC has been imposed. But I will not violate prohibitory orders as I will go there alone.
“If I am stopped by the police, I will move the court tomorrow (Monday). An LoP can’t be stopped from visiting a trouble-torn area,” Adhikari said before leaving his Kanthi residence for Howrah. BJP state unit chief Sukanta Majumdar was arrested on Saturday afternoon when he was heading towards Howrah district. He was later released. “After putting BJP WB President Sukanta Majumdar under detention, Mamata Banerjee is now ensuring that LoP Suvendu Adhikari is not able to visit Howrah, where BJP offices have been gutted. Her entire focus is on the opposition, not on rampaging ‘Dudhel Gais’ (milch cows), as she calls them,” BJP’s West Bengal co-in charge Amit Malviya tweeted.
What’s the entire matter?
Protests erupted in several parts of Howrah district on Friday over controversial remarks by suspended BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma and expelled leader Naveen Jindal on Prophet Mohammad. Agitators resorted to stone-pelting, setting police vehicles on fire and damaging public property during violent protests and clashes with the law enforcers in the district. Fresh violent protests were reported in Panchla on Saturday.
Prohibitory orders under Section 144 of CrPC have been clamped in several areas of Howrah including Uluberia, Panchla and Domjur till June 15 and internet services have been suspended in the entire district till June 13 to prevent the spread of misinformation.