Ever since the emergence of the BJP as a credible alternative to the Trinamool Congress in West Bengal, political violence in the state crossed all limits as the BJP witnessed unprecedented attacks on its workers as scores of workers, MLAs and MPs were attacked and some brutally killed. In a worrying development, no sooner did TMC’s victory became official, BJP party office in Arambagh was set ablaze with incidents of party worker’s homes being attacked also being reported in addition to Mamata-slayer Suvendhu Adhikari also being attacked post his victory in Nandigram.
In what can be seen as a sign of things to come for the BJP in West Bengal, just hours after TMC’s victory became official in the state, the BJP party office in Arambagh was torched with the saffron party pinning the blame on TMC with the latter denying the charges. In the video of the fire which has went viral, showed a fire raging through a temporary structure in Aramabagh. Arambagh is a town in Hooghly district which is around 80 kilometres away from Kolkata.
BJP’s IT cell chief Amit Malviya tweeted, “TMC cadres didn’t stop at burning BJP’s party offices, they set our booth agent’s house in Bishnupur also on fire…”
While Sambit Patra said, “As West Bengal poll results are being declared, TMC goons are attacking BJP offices & workers. BJP office in Arambagh was set on fire by TMC goons. TMC workers attacked BJP workers in Belaghat, similar incidents happened in Shivpur, Durgapur, Uttar Bardhaman.”
Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman while expressing concern about the BJP karyakartas tweeted, Shocking images of a @BJP4Bengal office being set on fire. Hope the administration ensures everyone’s safety. The hard work by all karyakarta and leadership of @BJP4Bengal in this election, resulted in a significant increase in presence in WB. We are with you, stay safe.”
In a separate incident the BJP alleged that house of its booth agent was also set on fire in Bishnupur after the results indicated a resounding win for the Trinamool Congress.
According to TV9 journalist, Anindya Banerjee, violence broke out in Kolkata with BJP cadres being the subject of target. “Violence breaks out in Beleghata, Kolkata. It’s barely 7 km from the icons Park Street. Media isn’t allowed anywhere near there. BJP cadres are targeted,” tweeted Banerjee.
In another incident, vehicles near Kashinath Biswas, BJP Candidate from Kolkata’s Beleghata were put on fire with another BJP worker’s house being attacked in Kasba by a band of goons. Even Suvendu Adhikari wasn’t spared as his car was also allegedly attacked post his victory in Nandigram.
If the BJP were to harbour any dreams of bettering its Lok Sabha tally in Bengal come 2024, the party must take every measure possible to safeguard its cadres in Bengal who would now become an easy target.