After the BJP government twice denied permission to the Trinamool Congress to hold a mega rally led by the party’s national General Secretary Abhishek Banerjee in Agartala, the Tripura High Court on Tuesday upheld the West Tripura District Magistrates order banning any kind of public rally by any political party in two areas under the Sadar Police Sub-Division till November 4.
Following the court ruling, Trinamool leader and West Bengal MP Santanu Sen said that they are yet to get Tuesday’s court order and the party would go forward with the legal matter in a legal way.
“The BJP government fears the Trinamool and Abhishek Banerjee a lot. The people of Tripura are with the party whole-heartedly despite the BJP government’s conspiracies against Trinamool Congress,” he told the media.
Sen, accompanied by Trinamool leaders Sushmita Dev and Subal Bhowmik, said that the party’s next course of action after Tuesday’s development would be announced soon.
West Tripura’s acting District Magistrate (DM) and Collector Rajib Datta in his order on Monday quoting the letter of district Superintendent of Police had said that he is satisfied that allowing any kind of meeting, procession, public gathering by any political party at present may deteriorate the law and order situation in the areas under the East Agartala and West Agartala police stations and the situation may worsen if not controlled right now.
Following a petition by Bhowmik, Tripura High Court Judge Arindam Lodh upheld the DM’s order on Tuesday.
Bhowmik had earlier sought direction to the police to allow the Trinamool to hold the mega rally led by Banerjee in Agartala on Wednesday.
Bhowmik, Sen and Dev vehemently criticised the BJP government for not allowing the ‘peaceful’ rally though the other parties, including the BJP, had recently organised political processions in the state.
The Tripura police last week twice disallowed the mega rally planned by the Trinamool, first on September 15 and then on September 16.
Anirban Das, Sub-Divisional Police Officer (SDPO), Sadar, first disallowed the Trinamool rally saying that permission for organising a mass rally in Agartala has already been granted to another political party on the same date and time.
When the Trinamool sought permission to hold the mega ‘padyatra’ (protest march) on September 16, the SDPO in his letter to Bhowmik said that it is not possible to permit the rally on Thursday since there will be law and order commitment of the police in view of the Viswakarma Puja on September 17.
The Trinamool leaders said that several top BJP and RSS leaders had visited West Bengal for campaigning during the Assembly elections and the administration or the law enforcement agencies did not stop them.
Congress-turned-Trinamool leader Sushmita Dev said on Tuesday that on September 8, large scale political violence was perpetrated across the state in which media offices were also attacked, but no one has been arrested so far despite photographs and videos showing the attackers appearing on social media.
“We wanted to organise a peaceful rally in Agartala. But the government did not give us the permission. We have also the responsibility to abide by the law just as the government has the duty to enforce the law,” Dev told the media.
Eyeing the Assembly polls in Tripura scheduled in 2023, Trinamool leaders, including Abhishek Banerjee, three Bengal ministers and over 12 MPs are frequently visiting the state since July 25 to build the organisation and garner support in the BJP-ruled state.
A series of violent incidents involving Trinamool leaders from West Bengal and Tripura have been reported from the state. Many leaders were also arrested by the Tripura police.