Skip to main content
xYOU DESERVE INDEPENDENT, CRITICAL MEDIA. We want readers like you. Support independent critical media.

Bengal: CPI(M) Leader, Cadres Face 'False Case' From TMC in West Medinipore Before Panchayat Polls

An FIR against the Left activist has been filed on the complaint of the vice-president of TMC's Keshpur block unit, Shyamal Acharya.
Bengal: CPI(M) Leader, Cadres Face 'False Case' From TMC in West Medinipore Before Panchayat Polls

Representational Image. Image Courtesy: PTI

Kolkata: After the change of governance in West Bengal back in 2011, the West Medinipore district has seen several cases being filed against activists and leaders of the opposition Communist Party of India (Marxist). The trend continues as CPI(M) leader Sushanta Ghosh and Left activists grapple with fresh allegations from a Trinamool Congress leader.

The district had been at the epicentre of Maoist violence, whereby over 200 CPI(M) activists were reportedly killed. After the Trinamool Congress came to power, the district has witnessed allegations being piled by the ruling TMC's activists, many of them reportedly former Maoist sympathisers and activists. 

The Communist Party of India (Marxist) district secretary Sushanta Ghosh, a former minister in the Left Front cabinet, has faced many such allegations. The influential CPI(M) leader with a grassroot network was arrested by the police after being named in the Benachapra skeleton case. After spending 167 days in jail, he got bail on the condition that he would not visit his home district. However, later he got relief from the Supreme Court, which quashed that clause of the bail bond.  

According to a political observer, the political atmosphere is conducive to the Left in the West Medinipur district this year, and the Left Front held many big meetings in the former Maoist-dominated areas. This high level of mass mobilisation before the Panchayat polls in the state has startled all the parties operating in the district. Under these conditions, to keep the Ghosh away, vice-president of TMC's Keshpur block unit Shyamal Acharya has lodged a police complaint alleging intimidation carried out by supporters of Sushanta Ghosh, according to the observer. An FIR has been filed in the case. 

Ghosh, speaking to NewsClick, said that the allegations against CPI(M) activists and him are used to break the spirit of the cadre ahead of the Panchayat elections.

"The more cornered they are, the more ferocious they are becoming to win in the Panchayet elections by hook or crook," Ghosh said. 

The Benachapra skeleton case is a controversial one investigated by the state CID, whereby a skeleton was recovered after 2011, and TMC leader Acharya claimed that the skeleton belonged to his absconding father. He also claimed that the underwear on the skeleton belonged to his father, and that is how he identified the skeleton. Later, Ghosh, along with others, was arrested in this case.

According to Satyen Maity, CPI(M) leader from the West Medinipore district, there is discontent at the village level over reported nepotism in the Awas Yojana. The undeserving beneficiaries of the scheme and the TMC have been cornered in most villages of the district before the upcoming Panchayat polls. Under these circumstances, the same Shyamal Acharya filed the complaint on February 17, saying that masked people were threatening him to refrain from giving witness testimony in the Benachapra skeleton case. 

The Left says that they were not let to operate in West Medinipur after the change of governance. In Keshpur, amid allegations of rigging, the TMC has a winning margin of nearly a lakh in this single constituency during Assembly elections. Ghosh told the media that in such an area, the TMC vice-president, one of the most influential persons, cannot be intimidated by CPI(M) activists. Later Acharya told reporters that many CPI(M) activists had been thrown out of their houses in the district by the TMC and these people are threatening him.

Acharya himself has several serious cases against him that are pending. On December 17, 2009, many arms were confiscated from his house at Udaypalli in Medinipore town and Maoist posters were also found there. He has cases registered against him under the Arms Act clauses no. 26 and 27 in FIR no. 411/2009.

Get the latest reports & analysis with people's perspective on Protests, movements & deep analytical videos, discussions of the current affairs in your Telegram app. Subscribe to NewsClick's Telegram channel & get Real-Time updates on stories, as they get published on our website.

Subscribe Newsclick On Telegram