Bengal’s two top officers, summoned by the centre over law and order in the state after an attack on BJP president JP Nadda’s convoy, will not attend the meeting on Monday, the state government said today.
The Chief Secretary and Director General of Police will not attend the meeting with the Union Home Secretary as the incident was “already being examined”, the state government said in a letter to the centre.
The Home Ministry had said the meeting had been called “to discuss the law and order situation… including the recent attacks on Z-category protectees”.
“We had indeed made elaborate arrangements for security coverage of the protectees yesterday,” said Chief Secretary Alapan Bandyopadhyay in the letter.
The centre’s summons followed Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar’s report to Home Minister Amit Shah detailing “deteriorating law and order”.
Mr Nadda’s convoy was attacked with bricks, stones and sticks near Kolkata on Thursday afternoon. Some leaders were injured and cars were damaged in the incident, which the BJP said was the work of supporters of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool Congress.
Seven people have been arrested and three FIRs (First Information Reports) have been filed by the police, one against a BJP leader.
The Chief Minister has accused the BJP of staging the attack and falsely accusing her party men as part of a political conspiracy in the run-up to the Bengal election due in six months.
When the incident took place, Mr Nadda’s convoy was on its way to Diamond Harbour, the parliamentary constituency of the Chief Minister’s nephew Abhishek Banerjee. The cars were attacked with rocks and sticks by a mob allegedly of Trinamool supporters. The BJP said its leaders like Kailash Vijayvargiya and Mukul Roy were hurt.
“Bengal has descended into an era of tyranny, anarchy and darkness under the Trinamool rule. The manner in which political violence has been institutionalised and brought to the extreme in West Bengal under TMC rule is sad and worrying,” Mr Shah tweeted.
He said the central government was taking the incident “seriously” and the West Bengal government “will have to answer to the peace-loving people of the state for this sponsored violence.”