After assault on Left leader, uneasy calm in Bengal town
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Torn party flags with broken helmets, sandals and cricket stumps lie in a paddy field situated right across Netaji Bhavan — the Forward Bloc party office at Cinematolla in Dhaniakhali that was attacked by Trinamool Congress workers on December 8.
The attack left at least 10 people, including an 76-year-old former Left Front minister, Naren Dey, seriously injured. Four of them, including Dey, are in hospital. The office has since been closed.
Dhaniakhali Bloc local committee secretary Anjan Sinha Roy, who was at the Bloc office at the time of the attack, filed an FIR a day after the incident naming seven people.
On Tuesday, however, he backtracked. In a letter he wrote to SP Sunil Choudhury, he said he did not know those he had named in the FIR and it was the administration who should find the perpetrators.
Sinha Roy, who is an electrical contractor, has gone into hiding. All shopkeepers at Cinematolla, located near Netaji Bhavan, whom The Indian Express spoke to, said they had not seen anything. People are scared, and not without reason.
Four days after the incident and an FIR, not a single person is in custody even though Bloc leaders allege those named in the FIR are roaming around freely. "The police are not doing anything. They dance to the tune of ruling party,'' Chandicharan Majhi, Dhaniakhali Bloc local committee vice-president, who was severely beaten up in the incident, told The Indian Express.
In the Assembly, minister for commerce and industries Partha Chatterjee, who had yesterday alleged that Dey was play-acting, today, in a statement, wished hin speedy recovery and said the police would catch the miscreants.
Forward Bloc leaders said Sinha Roy backtracked on the FIR out of fear. "They threatened him with dire consequences, which is why he changed his version and left the area,'' said Biswanath Karak, opposition chief whip in the Assembly, and a senior Bloc leader.
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