“I have never imagined that we have to appeal for communal amity in Bengal, which was regarded as outpost of peoples’ unity. Entire country revered Jyoti Basu’s Bengal as the example of communal harmony.”
CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury expressed his anguish in these words while addressing a public meeting in Dhulagarh in Howrah district.
Dhulagarh has been affected by serious communal strife, instigated by the TMC and the BJP. Many homes, shops were destroyed or burnt; families attacked, people forced to flee. The disturbances started from December 13 and continued for days as police and district administration remained silent spectator. The area remained tense for weeks and many people have lost their work too.
CPI(M) has earlier mobilised in the vicinity and submitted deputation to police and administration. On December 27, Left Front had organised a procession and public meeting in the restive area. The mobilisation was huge, reflecting the determination of people in and around the place to restore the legacy of unity in West Bengal.
Addressing the meeting from a makeshift platform, Yechury appealed to people to rise above communal divisions and struggle unitedly for their rights. “The entire country is reeling under ill effects of demonetisation. What is needed is united resistance of people. But like Shakuni of Mahabharata, communal forces are sowing seeds of division to weaken the struggle. TMC government in West Bengal has remained under paralysis in the face of communal division”, said Yechury. He reminded the people of the rich legacy of the state in combating communal forces.
CPI(M) Polit Bureau member Md Salim said, by mixing religion with politics Modibhai and Didibhai have created havoc in West Bengal. The chief minister is learning from RSS.
Left Front legislative party leader Sujan Chakraborty alleged that communal forces are spreading their tentacles in the TMC rule.
The police which failed to protect the people during the attack, was hyper active to prevent Left Front leaders to meet the affected people. The large procession was blocked midway. However Yechury and Left leaders met the victims who have come to report their plight. They specifically alleged that two groups loyal to two TMC MLAs were indulged in the violence. Small businessmen of the area complained that TMC leaders resisted police from entering the affected area for at least 24 hours. Elected panchayat member of the BJP instigated the miscreants. Yechury assured them that Left parties and red flag will remain by their side.
In fact, for last few years a large number of CPI(M) activists were forced to leave the area under the TMC terror. No political activity of the Left was allowed. Police has registered a number of false cases against CPI(M) workers. Under this situation the miscreant elements and communal elements have been allowed a free run, culminating into violence of worst kind. However, the march of thousands of people with red flag has sent a new message of confidence to the masses.
CPI(M) leader Dipak Dasgupta, Sridip Bhattacharya, CPI leaders Probodh Panda, Manjukumar Majunmdar, Forward Block leader Hafiz Alam Sairani and others also participated in the rally.