11 held as 8 burnt alive over TMC leader’s murder in WB, 2 cops suspended, BJP wants Centre to act. A violent mob on Monday night torched their houses in Birbhum of West Bengal, following the murder of a Trinamul Congress leader over a feud. The death toll may rise.
The massacre, which has put the TMC government in a tight spot, unfolded at Boktui village in Rampurhat after a gang of four miscreants, travelling on two motorcycles with their faces covered, hurled bombs on upa pradhan (deputy chief) Bhadu Sheikh of Boroshal gram panchayat, at a tea stall on Monday evening.
8 burnt alive over TMC leader’s murder in WB
Sheikh was declared brought dead at Rampurhat Hospital. State DGP Manoj Malviya ruled out “any political angle” and hinted at “personal enmity” behind the murder. The victim’s family accused his party colleagues of killing him over an internal feud after the murder of his brother Babar last year.
Within an hour of Sheikh’s murder, his followers retaliated, setting at least seven-eight houses on fire after locking the residents from outside. Azizul Haque, an official of the Rampurhat fire station, told the media that three charred bodies were recovered on Monday night while seven more were found at a house early Tuesday. The list of victims which include many women and children, is yet to be identified due to severe burns.
Malviya said, “At night three injured persons were admitted to hospital. One of them succumbed to injuries later. Besides, seven bodies were recovered on Tuesday from one of the houses owned by Sanju Sheikh. Altogether eight were dead. 11 persons were arrested.”
He added that SDPO (Rampurhat) Shayan Ahmed and Rampurhat police station OC Tridip Pramanik were suspended while a special investigation team led by ADG(CID) Gyanwant Singh was formed for a probe.
At the Assembly, BJP MLAs staged a walkout and demanded Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s resignation. Putting the death toll at 12, the leader of the opposition Suvendu Adhikari sought the Centre’s intervention.