Terming the West Bengal Bandh as “complete success”, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) called off the 12-hour bandh in the state two hours prior to the scheduled time of ending the bandh.
The bandh was called over the killing of two students during a protest over the appointment of school teachers in Islampur area in North Dinajpur district.
The BJP also asserted that in the history of Bengal, never have such peaceful protests been held before.
Well, it is not at all the way the BJP has claimed it to be. The bandh was marked by sporadic incidents of violence with vandalism being reported from some of the districts in the state.
Let’s take you through a series of disruptive and violent incidents that took place during the bandh:
- Shyambazar and Sealdah areas in the metropolis reported incidents of stone-pelting.
- Three state-run buses were set on fire and vehicles were pelted with stones in Islampur. The BJP supporters had also blocked NH34 in North Dinajpur.
- A bus of the C7 route was also set on fire.
- Clashes broke out between TMC and BJP supporters in West Midnapore, West Burdwan, South Dinajpur and North Dinajpur districts. This happened when the rallies taken out by both the parties, one in support of the bandh and the other party denouncing it, came face to face.
- In Midnapore district, tyres were set afire on roads and stone were pelted at buses.
- Few stations under Eastern Railway and South Eastern Railway witnessed disruptions in train services.
- Suburban train services in the Howrah-Kharagpur section of the South Eastern Railway were affected due to BJP workers staging blockades at Chengail, Andul and Ramrajatala stations.
By terming the bandh as a “success,” is BJP endorsing violence and disruption?
Well, seeing the kind of incidents that took place during the bandh, once can call it anything but successful. Instead of calling for a bandh, BJP could have come with a more peaceful way of resolving the issue.