Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Malda, 16 April, 2014: Much to the relief of the state’s ruling party, district Trinamul president and social welfare minister Sabitri Mitra’s son in law Samadip Sarkar alias Tinku along with other six Trinamul supporters, who were arrested for manhandling the election commission officials on 10 April in Manikchak, were released on bail on Wednesday.
After they were produced in court today, judge Pradip Roy released them on bail against a bond of Rs 2000 per accused. He also ordered that the accused would have to report to the investigating officer every alternate day till 29 April, the next hearing day.
Mitra said, “We are happy with the court’s today’s decision. We from the very first day said that the EC officials stopped our party candidate’s car and thus provoked our party supporters.”
Malda north Congress candidate and district Congress president Mausam Noor, however, said, “Trinamul has humiliated a constitutional body like election commission. Police have not been playing an impartial role. Common people are disgusted with such state of affairs. They would give Trinamul a befitting reply in the ensuing Lok Sabha election.”
Malda, 16 April, 2014: Aggrieved with frequent power-cut that has been heavily affecting the agriculture, hundreds of farmers from 10 villages of Habibpur block today demonstrated in front of district office of West Bengal State Electricity Distribution Company Ltd (WBSEDCL) today. The farmers putting paddy saplings on the table even gheraoed the divisional manager of WBSEDCL in his office.
Secretary of Habibpur Krishi Unnayan Samity, an organization of peasants Subodh Roy said, “We the peasants of 11 gram panchayat areas in Habibpur block are the worst victims of exceptional duration of power-cut every day. For past two months situation has further worsened. We planted paddy saplings taking loan from banks. But those are getting dried up as we cannot provide adequate water. Shallow machines are not working for want of electricity. So, desperately we had to organize today’s movement.”
A farmer from Mangalpura village Dhananjay Mardi said, “I loaned Rs 50,000 for cultivating paddy in my five bigha land. But those saplings are getting withered for want of water. Power-cut has destroyed our lives. Whenever we knock the officers and workers of Habibpur sub station, they conceded their helplessness.”
Hundreds of farmers from Jajoil, Aktail, Srirampur, Habibpur, Bulbulchandi, Mangalpura and other villages said that on one hand WBSEDCL officials were enjoying the comfort of air-conditioner and on the other hand the farmers were on the verge of doom.
Some WBSEDCL workers, however, blamed the departmental officials for the fault. “Senior officials never visit the rural areas. Everything is being managed by the contractors. There are only 6.3 mva transformers in Habibpur transmitting only 9 megawatt power. But now, there is want of at least 12 megawatt power,” one of those workers said.
WBSEDCL officials on condition of anonymity said that the gap between the actual demand of electricity and consumption was causing the problem. They blamed hooking and running on unauthorized shallow pumps too.
Divisional engineer Saibal Mazumdar however refused to comment. He said, “The matter would be conveyed to higher officials. They would comment in this regard.”
Malda, 16 April, 2014: A housewife, allegedly failing to bear her husband’s recuurent tortures, committed suicide along with her two kids by jumping in front of Kolkata bound Tebhaga express between Mahanagar and Gazole stations of Shahajadpur gram panchayat in Gazole police station around 7 am on Wednesday.
Police sources informed that the housewife Anjula Bibi (25) was thrashed by the speeding train and died on spot. Her kids – two and a half years old Alauddin and one year old Sayeda Parvin were recovered from the spot and rushed to hospital. But the kids died there. The accused husband Farooq Momin, a mason fled from the village after the incident.
Uncle of the deceased housewife, Nurul Ansari informed police that after a rift on Tuesday night, Farooq allegedly drove Abjula Bibi and her kids away from the house. Whole night the woman had to struggle with her kids. Finally, she committed suicide with kids as Farooq’s torture was unbearable for her, Ansari alleged.
He said that since her marriage with Farooq six years back, Anjula used to be tortured by her husband regularly. Even few days back Anjula fled from Farooq and took shelter with her father Abdul Saiyad at Bhalukdanga village. But her father again pursued her to return to her husband. Ansari said that Farooq did not have financial crisis but peculiarly he went on torturing his wife and kids.
Villagers including a Trinamul panchayat member Murtaz Ali too said that the woman killed herself and kids as she could not bear her husband’s torture any more. They demanded that the husband should be exemplarily punished.
Police from Gazole police station along with Malda GRP reached spot to recover the bodies. Mr Ansari has lodged a complaint of domestic violence and provocation to commit suicide against Frooq Momin. Police have been searching the absconding husband.
Malda, 16 April, 2014: Though film star Mithun Chakraborty was naturally the only cynosure of his first election campaign meeting of in the district at Tantipara field of at ward no. 18 under Old Malda Municipality area today, his leader Mamata Banerjee’s unexpected emergence in the meeting simply outshone him. She not only bewildered the Trinamul Congress leaders and the audience with her abrupt presence but also urged the people earnestly to throw away Congress, CPI-M and BJP.
Merely a day before the Lok Sabha election in Darjeeling, chief minister Mamata Banerjee asserted that people would vote there against the ‘ploy of dividing the state.’ “Hill people do not solicit division. We do not prefer politics of division. So, we would win in Darjeeling,” she said. She once again asked the people to be “aware of a communal party like BJP.”
Trinamul’s star-studded meeting commenced amid confusion as Mithun Chakraborty’s helicopter landed at Malda aerodrome at 4.35 pm instead of district sports association’s ground where the party leaders were waiting since 3 pm. Chakraborty and Mukul Roy reached the meeting venue around 5 pm.
Even before the film star and senior Trinamul leader Roy settled on the dais, chief minister’s convoy reached there. Getting on the dais Banerjee said, “After concluding my programme in south Dinajpur I was heading towards the hotel from aerodrome. But I heard that Mithun and Mukul are holding a meeting here. So, I have come here to meet you.”
|A star-show in front of Chief Minister in TMC poll campaign in Old Malda on Wednesday|
(Photo: Sudip Roy Choudhury)
In her speech Miss Banerjee once again claimed that the Congress backstabbed Trinamul in Malda and Murshidabad during 2011 assembly election. “It is my realization that we must strengthen ourselves here. Hence, we are contesting in both Lok Sabha seats in Malda,” she explained.
Targeting Congress the CM said, “Previously you voted for Congress but did not get anything from them. Give us a chance. I promise you to develop Malda in all aspects. I would be with you always. This time I would be here for five days. Do not waste your vote by supporting Congress, CPI-M and BJP. Let a new battle of Bangla begins against the state’s deprivation by Delhi.” She introduced Malda north Trinamul candidate Soumitra Ray to the audience and sought vote for him.
Mithun Chakraborty, who entertained the audience by his dance in filmy-style in tune with Ray’s song said, “Didi wave is moving and shaking the country. You should strengthen her hand. The more seats she bags, the stronger she would be to develop the state.” Introducing Ray as his old-friend, Chakraborty said that Soumitra Ray’s win would take Malda one step ahead towards development.
A huge audience turned up in the meeting to take a glimpse of Mithun Chakraborty and Mamata Banerjee on the same dais.
Malda, 15 April, 2014: National leaders of all major parties are going to rally in Malda to campaign for their party candidates. While Trinamul supremo and chief minister Mamata Banerjee has stationed in Malda to campaign in Malda, Dinajpur and Birbhum district for next five days, UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi are likely to campaign in two Lok Sabha constituencies this week. BJP leaders have been trying to hold a meeting of their Prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi in Malda also. BJP sources informed that all India BJP president Rajnath Singh, Hema Malini, Barun Gandhi and other leaders may reach Malda to campaign for BJP candidates.
Mamata Banerjee reached Malda today around 2.45 pm by copter. Tourism minister Krishnendu Choudhury, district Trinamul Chhatra Parishad president Prasenjit Das received her at Malda airport. However, district Trinamul president Sabitri Mitra was conspicuously absent there.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee at Malda aerodrome on Tuesday (Photo: Sudip Roy Choudhury)
Chief minister greeted the people on occasion of Bengali New Year. Later she said that she would be stationing here till 20 April. “I would be holding election campaign in three areas in South Dinajpur by helicopter,” she said. On 17 April Miss Banerjee would bee addressing three public meeting for election at Habibpur, Harischandrapur and Malatipur in Malda north constituency.
On 18 April, Mamata Banerjee would be holding campaign in Farakka and Birbhum by copter. On 19 April she would attend election meeting in Goalpokhor and Raiganj from Malda by helicopter. On 20 April she would leave for Berhampre by copter around 12 noon. Chief minister would hold at least 12 public meetings for election between 16 and 19 April.
Bollywood star and Trinamul MP Mithun Chakraborty is supposed to address to public meetings in Old Malda on 16 April and on 17 April at Mathurapur in Manikchak and Kaliachak.
Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi is likely to address a public meeting on 19 April at Kandaran village in Samsi in support of Malda north Congress candidate Mausam Moor. Sonia Gandhi is expected to hold an election meeting in Sujapur in support of Congress candidate AH Khan Chgoudhury (Dalu) on 22 April.
BJP leaders like Rajnath Singh, LK Advani, Barun Gandhi and Hema Malini would be addressing election meetings in Malda.
CPI-M leaders including state leader of opposition Surjya Kanta Mishra has already attended election meeting in Malda. State LF chairman Biman Bose extensively campaigned for CPI-M candidates on Tuesday. CPI-M leaders informed that party’s polibureau member Brinda Karat would also be coming to Malda to campaign for party candidates.
Malda, 15 April, 2014: State CPI-M secretary and chairman of state Left Front (LF) Biman Bose today raised questions regarding the source of election fund of Trinamul Congress. Mr Bose met the LF workers and addressed a election meeting in Malda on Tuesday.
|Biman Bose in Malda on Tuesday|
Bose said, “Trinamul supremo Mamata Banerjee claims that her party is a poor people’s party. But then how the party leaders are using chartered flights paying an hefty amount of Rs 60 lakh per day. They must clarify their source of fund.”
“We lodged complaints with the Election Commission (EC) apprehending that Trinamul Congress might indulge in booth looting as they did in panchayat and municipality elections before. We anticipated that Trinamul would attempt to prevent people from exercising their franchise. We urged the EC to adopt preventive measures. But now the EC itself has been attacked by the Trinamul on several occasions. It is a detrimental trend to attack a constitutional body like EC,” the state LF chairman said.
He alleged that chief minister Mamata Banerjee’s statement against the EC was encouraging her party workers to manhandle the EC officials.
Bose said that in Trinamul regime there were one after another scams in the state. Lakhs of people lost their last penny to the chit-fund companies. But no proper action was taken. TET scam has not been probed into. Trinamul’s actual face has been known to people.
Bose addressed a workers’ meeting in Malda College auditorium today. Later, he addressed a public meeting in Sujapur on Tuesday evening in support of the CPI-M candidate in Malda south constituency Abul Hasnat Khan. Mr Bose in his speech attacked the Congress and BJP too.
Malda, 15 April, 2014: Trinamul Congress has once again targeted the Election Commission (EC) officials after an FIR was lodged against the party workers for harassing the EC officials in Kaliachak on Monday afternoon. Meanwhile, the district administration informs that those who attacked the EC officials in Kaliachak yesterday are being identified from the video-footage of the incident.
It may be mentioned that after Manikchak incident on 10 March, Trinamul supporters once again allegedly heckled the officer in charge (OC) – Model Code of Conduct (MCC) team Apratim Banerjee who went to Alinagar village on Monday afternoon to remove political flags, festoons and banners from government properties.
It was alleged that before the MCC officials got down from the car, around 200 Trinamul supporters gheraoed them and asked clarification as to why they would dismantle the Trinamul’s flags and posters.
The MCC team members were allegedly assaulted and abused too by the TMC supporters. In face of the protest the EC officials had to return. Later, they lodged a police complaint. BDO, Kaliachak I Diptarka Basu too submitted a CD to the district administration.
However, Trinamul leaders started saving the image of the party from Tuesday. District Trinamul Youth president Amlan Bhaduri said, “It is unfortunate that the EC officials are particularly targeting us. Violation of MCC by the CPI-M and Congress is being overlooked.”
District Trinamul president and minister Sabitri Mitra too defendd the party workers. “Even though our party workers put flags and banners on their houses, EC officials were removing them. We are aware of the EC guidelines. But now it appears that MCC is applicable only to Trinamul and not the other parties.”
Malda DM Sharad Dwivedi said, “I have heard that some EC official was harassed in Kaliachak yesterday. A detailed report has been sought from the BDO. We would peruse the video footage too and try to identify the offenders.”
Malda, 14 April, 2014: Referring to a book titled ' An outsider in Politics' written by former Trinamul Congress MP Krishna Bose, CPI-M Central commitree member and state CITU president Shyamal Chakraborty today claimed that Trinaul's anti-BJP stand was actually a hoax to earn votes from the minority community.
Chakraborty said here today, "In page no.211 of the book Mrs Bose conceded that she alobg wuth other Trinamul MPs were whipped to vote for BJP during a debate over Godhra genocide in Lok Sabha in2002."
"Such a whip pricked her conscience but she was compelled to abide by the party stand," Chakraborty added hinting that they may use the content of the book against Trinamul in election campaign.
"Presently the TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee has come heavily on BJP. But it is only a convenient stand to woo minority voters. People must not forget tgat Mamata Banerjee greeted Narendra Modi after he was elected Gujrat chief minister post Godhra riot," Chakraborty said.
He claimed that after the poll if the situation demands, Trinamul might hold the hand of BJP again.
Malda, 14 April, 2014: After arresting KLO northern chief Malkhan Singh yesterday around 2 am, police have been interrogating him extensively to gather crucial information about KLO top leadership and their agenda.
A senior police officer who was present during the interrogation said on condution of anonymity that soon after he was arrested Malkhan begged if the police personnel not to kill him. "He was probably reeling under fear that police might have killed him," the police officer said.
He further informed that Malkhan was unarmed when he was arrested. The HK 33 automated rifle used by Malkhan was buried underground at one of his friend's house at Simla village in Bamangola police station.
|Malkhan Singh in police custody (Photo: Sudip Roy Choudhury)|
"After he was arrested, he helped us to dig up the rifle from his friend's house, " the officer said.
He added that Malkhan during the interrogation informed police that after his narrow escape from police on 30 March, he walked approximately 28 kilometers to go to Bamangola from Gazole. Malkhan informed police that he tried to flee to Bangladesh or Nepal after police kept chasing him. However, he deserted the idea as Central forces were deployed in Habibpur and Bamangola.
The officer on condition of anonymity said that Malkhan had informed police that he had sent four youths from Habibpur and Bamangola to KLO top leaders for arms training. However, police did not disclose the names of those youths.
Police sources informed that Malkhan wanted water in the morning and ate rooti and sabji. His physical condition was stated to be police.
Malda SP Rupesh Kumar said that Malkhan is kept in 14 days police custody. Police have been interrogating him. What Malkhan Singh said cannot be disclosed in the interest of enquiry.
Monday, April 14, 2014
Malda, 13 April, 2014: State Left Front (LF) chairman Biman Bose, who was in Malda today, credited the police for arrest of dreaded KLO militant Malkhan Singh alias Madhab Mandal. However, he hinted that KLO and Kamtapur movement got indirect encouragement from Trinamul Congress.
Before leaving for Itahar to address an election meeting this morning, Bose said, “KLO had always been a threat in North Bengal. DYFI leader Shekhar Singha was killed in a KLO attack in 2006. It is the relentless effort of police that finally brought the success of arresting Malkhan Singh. Police have done a praiseworthy job.”
However, he added that in previous election Trinamul tacitly encouraged the Kamtapur movement. “Uttare Kamta, Dakshine Mamata” (North is for Kamta, south is for Mamata) was the popular slogan then. So, Trinamul cannot deny responsibility of flourishing of such disruptive forces,” he added.
The state LF chairman alleged that the chief minister Mamata Banerjee was considering herself above the law. “She must know that no one is above law and all must abide by the constitution of the country,” Bose said here today.
Malda, 13 April, 2014: The peaceful village with all its paddy fields, greeneries, red-soiled roads, thatched huts and cow-sheds is no different from numerous other villages of the state. But a particular house built on 1.5 bighas of land, merely 500 meters away from Malda-Nalagola state highway distinguishes Kangsa village of Pakua gram panchayat in Bamangola police station as that is the address of dreaded KLO top brass Malkhan Singh alias Madhab Mandal who was nabbed by police quite early this morning around 2 am from Jamalpur forest in neighbouring Habibpur block.
Malkhan’s arrest has seemingly relieved the inhabitants of Kangsa village as they hope their repose at midnight would not be disrupted suddenly at nights by police personnel who raided the village even at odd hours in search of their prime target Malkhan who is fondly known as Madhab in the village.
A visit to Kangsa village around 7 am on Sunday morning revealed a weird silence that has gripped the village since the residents learnt about Madhab’s arrest. Nevertheless their facial expressions were suggestive of an alleviation coupled with inquisitiveness. Soon after reaching the village the residents started asking about Madhab. They all were pretty eager to know the current whereabouts of Madhab and how police arrested him.
Sidhubala Mandal, Malkhan’s mother put on an indifferent look when she opened the door. Her husband Sachin Mandal had gone to Pakua Haat and did not know about their elder son Madhab’s arrest even then. Madhab’s next brother Jadab was arrested too last month. Another brother Barun works in Kolkata. Youngest brother Karun is the only resort of the old parents.
|Despondent mother of Malkhan Singh on Sunday at Kangsa village|
The bamboo-fenced house has a mud-house in the front. At the rear there is a concrete one-storied building without paint and a Mangal Chandi temple, both built by Malkhan in 2012, the neighbours informed. The peasant family seems to be well-to-do. Madhab’s father has four cattle, 10 bighas of land and business of crops and vegetables.
While asked about her son Sindhubala’s early indifference melted into tears. She said, “Madhab’s militant life made the lives of the neighbours unbearable. We want peace now. We hope that the arrest would prove to be a boon for Madhab as it would pave way for his mainstreaming.”
Malkhan’s next-door neighbour Mohan Chandra Mandal, a 55 years old cab-driver said that it was initially hard to believe that young Madhab, who used to address him as Dadu (grandfather) since his childhood, had turned into a militant Malkhan who stole away the sleep of police department. “I have seen Madhab growing. But his activities as Malkhan are really alien to me. Long after his suddenly disappearance from village we came to know that Malkhan had joined KLO and earned notoriety as a militant,” Mandal said.
“We used to learn about his activities from media. Police used to raid the village to search him. I think now at least we would get rid of trampling of heavy police-boots now and then,” the old man hoped.
Another neighbour Sabita Mandal too echoed the feeling of relief. “Police have got the target. Now, hopefully we would have some peace after Madhab’s arrest. It is really reassuring for us.”
Malda, 13 April, 2014: In the biggest breakthrough in recent years Malda police in joint operation with Central forces succeeded to arrest the “most wanted” KLO militant and the northern chief of the organization Malkhan Singh alias Madhab Mandal (32) around 2 am on Sunday from Jamalpur forest of Mangalpura gram panchayat in Habibpur police station.
A most-modern foreign made automated rifle of HK-33 series, 112 cartridges of 5.56 mm, Rs 40,000 cash and counterfeited currencies of Rs 85,000 were recovered from Malkhan. After he was produced in court today, chief judicial magistrate Sumitra Deb ordered to keep Malkhan Singh in police custody for 14 days.
|Malkhan Singh in police custody on Sunday|
At least nine serious cases under non-bailable sections like murder, abductions, threat to kill, fake currecies peddling are there against Mlkhan. He was prime accused in bus-firing case at Kalipukur area in Habibpur on 27 December, killing of a BJP leader Nripen Mandal in Habibpur on 16 June, 2013 and an explosion in Gazole on 25 June, 2013 that claimed a life.
Police sources informed that Malkhan, during an extensive interrogation for over ours, admitted his involvement in those cases. “Malkhan informed us that he killed the BJP leader to capture the locality. His motive behind Gazole explosion was to create terror at the locality. He has admitted that after the bus owner denied to pay him the hefty amount demanded by him, he fired on the bus in December, last year,” a senior police officer said. He added that Malkhan informed that he regularly visited Bangladesh, Nepal and Bhutan for keeping connection with KLO’s top leaders.
|DIG Satyajit Bandyopadhyay showing weapons recovered from Malkhan Singh|
DIG, Malda range Satyajit Bandyopadhyay along with Malda SP Rupesh Kumar, additional SP Shyam Singh, DSP (Headquarters) Siddharth Dorji, and police officers of Habibpur and Bamangola police stations who joined the operation to arrest Malkhan early this morning told the reporters that acting on a tip off a special team of police from Habibpur and Bamangola police stations arrested Malkhan from dense forest of Jamalpur quite early this morning. Prior to the police operation the forest was encircled by SSB jawans of 40th battalion.
Bandyopadhyay added that Malkhan was to hold a meeting in the forest. However, no other KLO militant was present there. The DIG informed that Malkhan underwent arms training in Bhutan border in 2000 and was thereafter appointed chief of fourth battalion of KLO. Malkhan directed several militant and disruptive activities in North Bengal in recent times.
He said, “Malkhan was adept in using firearms of any category and skilled in explosion of grenades too. The automated HK-33 rifle that was recovered from Malkhan’s custody is generally used by Bodo militants. Malkhan got it from an Assam based militant outfit one and a half years back.”
The DIG said, “Malkhan’s arrest before the general election is indeed a huge success. Those police personnel who conducted the operation to arrest Malkhan would be rewarded.” He added that while escaping a police operation recently in Gazole, Malkhan got a knee-injury. Before he was produced in court today, police took him to Bulbulchandi rural hospital for medical checkup.
Senior police officials hoped that Malkhan’s arrest would help them gather crucial information about KLO top-boss Jiban Singha.
Malda, 12 April, 2014: Inspector in charge (IC) of Harischandrapur police station Babin Mukherjee has been removed by an order of the Election Commission on Saturday. CPM lodged a complaint of intimacy with ruling Trinamool Congress against Mukherjee.
It has been learnt from sources that recently Mukherjee inaugurated a women's help desk in Harischandrapur police station and invited local Trinamool leader Madhumita Roy in the programme.
Immediately after the inauguration, CPM leaders lodged a complaint with EC claiming that Mukherjee had violated model code of conduct by inviting TMC leaders in inauguration programme of the centre after declaration of election. CPM leaders apprehended that Mukherjee might indirectly provide advantage to Trinamool during the election.
After the complaint was reviewed by the EC, district police administration was directed to replace Mukherjee. Accordingly, he was asked to join missing personnel bureau of the district immediately.
SP, Malda Rupesh Kumar said, “A new officer would take up the charge of Harischandrapur police station.”
Mukherjee however refrained from comments and only said that he got information of transfer on Saturday.
Malda, 12 April, 2014: Trinamool Congress minister Sabitri Mitra’s son in law Samadip Sarkar along with three other TMC workers were produced in court today in connection with manhandling the Election Commission officials on 10 April in Manikchak. Chief judicial magistrate Sumitra Deb ordered to keep them to keep in jail custody for four days. They would be produced in court again on 16 April.
Meanwhile, Malda south Trinamool candidate Moazzaem Hossain’s election agent Ramprabesh Mandal today lodged an FIR against EC claiming situation deteriorated in Manikchak after the EC officials deliberately blocked Hossain’s car when he was campaigning.
Police produced Sarkar and other TMC supporters today around 11.45 am where large number of TMC supporters was waiting since morning. They obstructed the photo-journalists to take snaps of those arrested TMC activists. After the accused were produced in court, their lawyer Abani Dutta strongly pleaded for their bail. However, assistant public prosecutor Jayanta Mazumdar vehemently opposed the bail plea.
After the CJM rejecting the bail-plea ordered jail custody for the accused for 14 days, their lawyer Dutta claimed that police did not have any such evidence so that the accused could be sent to jail custody for 14 days. CJM then ordered jail custody for five days for the accused. She also asked police to produce CD of the case immediately.
However, questions were raised as government pleader did not demand police custody for the accused. Mazumdar defending the stand said that all accused were arrested. Hence, police custody was not necessary.
On the other hand, TMC election agent from Malda south Mandal said, “EC officials were responsible for the scuffle. Excitement followed when they blocked our candidate’s vehicle deliberately. It was the task of the police. EC officials played a pro-active role to heckle the TMC. So we lodged an FIR against them.”
Malda DM Sharad Dwivedi conceded that a complaint was lodged in Manikchak police station against EC personnel on Saturday.
SP Rupesh Kumar said, “Police have ben looking into the complaint.”
Malda, 11 April, 2014: After passing the no-confidence motion against the former Left Front chairman of Old Malda Municipality (OMM), today six Trinamool councilors along with four dissident LF councilors today elected Bibhuti Ghosh as the new chairman. Seven CPI-M councilors were absent in today’s meeting.
However, Ghosh could not be sworn in as it requires the permission from the Election Commission now, informed Nanda Kishore Kumar, the executive officer of OMM. It has learnt from sources that competition has started among the Trinamool councilors for the vice chairman post. Block Trinamool leaders however informed that vice chairman would be chosen by the newly elected chairman Ghosh himself.
It may be mentioned that in 2010 out of 18 seats of OMM, CPM won 10 seats and RSP won 2 seats. Congress won remaining six seats. But in 2013 all six Congress councilors joined the Trinamool. They with help of four dissident LF councilors brought no confidence motion against Mr Ghosh which was passed on 26 March.
Large number of people gathered today in front of OMM to witness the formation of new municipal board.
Malda, 11 April: Police recovered cache of arms along with poppy seeds and ingredients for manufacturing narcotics from a house at Narayanpur area in Kaliachak police station last night. However, none could be arrested. Congress has alleged that the area in a strong hold of the Trinamul Congress and their miscreants were storing arms and poppy seeds there. Trinamul has however denied the charge.
Police sources informed that acting on a tip off jwans of SSB and Kaliachak police jointly raided house of Motiur Sheikh at Narayanpur area around 10 pm last night. Police seized one musket, two pipe-guns, equipments for manufacturing 9 mm pistol, drill machines, screws, iron pipes and many other equipments along with 38 bags full of poppy seeds and ingredients to manufacture narcotics.
It may be mentioned that another arms factory was busted by police on 24 March during a raid. One person was arrested then. Existence of another arms factory has geared apprehensions among common people of the locality.
Police sources informed that Motiur Rahaman hired miscreants from Bihar to manufacture arms ad narcotics in the locality. However, he fled before the police raided the house.
Malda south Congress candidate AH Khan Choudhury (Dalu) alleged that the area was known to be Trinamul redoubt. “We anticipate that Trinamul was engaging miscreants in Kaliachak before the election,” he added.
District Trinamul president Sabitri Mitra, on the other hand, said, “Congress always blames Trinamul Police must see who were involved in manufacturing of arms in Kaliachak.”
Malda SP Rupesh Kumar said, “Police recovered firearms and poppy seeds from Kaliachak last night. A probe has been started.”
Malda, 11 April, 2014: Trinamul Congress seems to have taken no lesson from the Manikchak incident where Election Commission (EC) officials were manhandled while preventing a motorcycle rally of Trinamul Malda south candidate Moazzem Hossain on Thursday.
On Friday again Trinamul Congress candidate from Malda north Soumitra Ray was accused of holding an election rally with more than 100 motorcycles at Bulbulchandi area in Habibpur police station.
Congress leader of Habibpur Subhankar Mishra lodged a complaint today with Habibpur BDO Arnab Roy claiming that violating the EC’s strict directive Trinamul candidate Soumitra Ray organized a rally of more than a hundred motorcycles on Friday around 8.30 am.
Mishra further alleged that the motorcycle rally traversed along Dobapara, Dangapara, Madhya Kendua, Soladanga and Bulbulchandi areas. He claimed that Mr Ray was present in the rally himself and loudspeakers were sounded in high volume in front of Bulbulchandi hospital.
|TMC's motorcycle rally in Bulbulchandi on Friday (Photo: Sudip Roy Choudhury)|
Ray, however, denied the allegation. “There were only a few motorcycles of the well wishers. But it was better not to allow them in the rally. We did not sound loudspeakers in front of the hospital. Congress is alleging because they have felt that ground under their feet has weakened.”
Trinamul district president Sabitri Mitra said, “I would look into the matter. But administration and EC should play an impartial role. When all attention is on our rallies, CPI-M organized a motorcycle rally in Gazole on Wednesday. But no action was taken. Congress too organized motorcycle-rallies in different places.”
Malda DM Sharad Dwivedi said, “We have got a complaint about a motorcycle-rally in Habibpur today. BDO has been asked to send a report. Measures wold be taken after we receive the report.”
Malda, 11 April, 2014: After daylong dramatic developments police finally arrested four Trinamul Congress activists including social welfare minister Sabitri Mitra’s son in law Samadip Sarkar against whom FIR was lodged on Thursday for manhandling the Election Commission (EC) appointed personnel who asked the Trinamul supporters to stop the motorcycle rally violating the EC’s guideline. Those four Trinamul workers would be produced in court on Saturday.
Three other Trinamul workers who were arrested last night were produced in court today. Chief judicial magistrate Amitabha Das ordered to keep them in police custody for two days. Das also asked police to produce the CD of the incident.
After the Manikchak BDO lodged an FIR against four Trinamul workers including the minister’s son in law, police became active. Kalu Sheikh and a Trinamul member of Manikchak panchayat samity Bipin Bihari Mandal were arrested in the evening. Later, police arrested another Trinamul worker Nilkantha Singha from Khayertala village late last night. Though police raids continued over the night, four prime accused in the FIR remained out of reach of police.
However, scenario changed after EC took up the matter very seriously today and asked the Director General of Police (DGP) to file a report within 5 pm on Friday. DG immediately asked the Malda SP Rupesh Kumar to arrest the prime accused. District police officials held closed door meetings for hours, sources said.
Finally police arrested Mukleshur Rahaman and Motiur Rahman around 2 pm from Rathbari area in English Bazaar police station. Minister Mitra’s son in law Samadip Sarkar was arrested along with Jamal Khan around 4.30 pm from Mangalbari area in Malda police station.
|Minister Sabitri Mitra's son in law (in blue shirt) in police custody after being arrested manhandling EC officials|
Photo: Sudip Roy Choudhury
Malda SP Kumar said that four arrested persons would be produced in court on Saturday. Cases were filed against those seven arrested Trinamul supporters under IPC sections186, 188, 352, 353, 427, 34A, 171C, 141 RW and 171 MV act. Out of these sections 352 and 353 are nonbailble sections.
It may be mentioned that EC personnel and cameramen were attacked at Khayertala village of Manikchak on Wednesday when they tried to stop a motorcycle rally of Trinamul in support of Malda south Trinamul candidate Moazzem Hossain.
|New Malda SP Rupesh Kumar|
|Outgoing Malda SP Rajesh Yadav|
Malda, 10 April, 2014: CPI-M politbureau member and state’s leader of opposition Surjya Kanta Mishra slammed the chief minister Mamata Banerjee and her party Trinamul Congress today after the EC officials were manhandled by the Trinamool supporters in Manikchak block today.
Mishra extensively campaigned for CPI-M candidate Khagen Murmu in different areas in Malda north constituency from morning to evening. Around 10 am today he addressed an election meeting at Pakua Haat area in Bamangola block. He then rushed to Harischandrapur and Chanchal to address public meetings.
Large number of people gathered at Kalabagan area of CVhanchal where Mishra lambasted at the Chief Minister. “Her recent comments against the Election Commission (EC) in public meetings seem to have encouraged her party workers to indulge in such anarchist activities. It is indeed a detrimental trend for democracy as Trinamool leaders challenges the authority of such institutions at their will,” Mishra.
“It appears that the chief minister has been anticipating a deplorable result in Lok Sabha election. Hence, she has targeted the EC as she hit the human rights commission, women’s commission and other institutions. As the TMC workers are reeling under uncertainty, they are trying to thwart the election, it seems,” the leader of opposition said.
Mishra, however, also criticized the Congress in his meeting. “You elected the same Congress candidate in 2009. Now, she has come to you again with the promise of fulfilling the dream of his uncle Ghani Khan and Priya Ranjan Das Munshi. But she must account for what she has done in last five years.”
He urged the people to elect Murmu claiming that the “down to earth” tribal leader with work hard to translate people’s aspirations into reality.