Political leaders have tweeted to condemn an incident in which West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said she was injured in the leg while campaigning for the state election in Nandigram, from where the Trinamool Congress chief is contesting.
Ms Banerjee said she was attacked by four or five people at a time when there was no police officer around her. In visuals, the Chief Minister is seen holding her ankle while sitting on the front seat of a car.
“I unequivocally condemn the cowardly & despicable attack on @MamataOfficial ji by goons. PS-WB police is now controlled by EC which is directed by BJP. Nation knows tht ppl who hv no belief in democracy can stoop to any level to vent their frustration of fighting a lost battle. I wish @MamataOfficial ji a speedy recovery! Those behind this attack must not be spared,” Rashtriya Janata Dal leader Tejashwi Yadav tweeted.
I unequivocally condemn the cowardly & despicable attack on @MamataOfficial ji by goons.
PS-WB police is now controlled by EC which is directed by BJP.
Nation knows tht ppl who hv no belief in democracy can stoop to any level to vent their frustration of fighting a lost battle.
— Tejashwi Yadav (@yadavtejashwi) March 10, 2021
Congress leader Abhijit Mukherjee tweeted, “I wish @MamataOfficial Didi a speedy recovery. Those behind this must not be spared. Didi, you have tough battle to fight ahead & you will surely emerge victorious! My very good wishes for you and again wish you a speedy recovery.”
I wish @MamataOfficial Didi a speedy recovery ! Those behind this must not be spared .
Didi , You have tough battle to fight ahead & You will surely emerge victorious !
My very good wishes for You & again wish you a speedy recovery ????
— Abhijit Mukherjee (@ABHIJIT_LS) March 10, 2021
“I strongly condemn the attack on Mamta Didi. Those responsible should be immediately arrested and punished. I pray for her speedy recovery,” Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal tweeted.
Leader of the Congress in Lok Sabha Adhir Chowdhury said Ms Banerjee was trying to “gain sympathy” before the election. “She planned this drama before the election after sensing difficulties in Nandigram. She is not only a Chief Minister, but a ‘police mantra’ too. Can you believe that there was no police with the ‘police mantri’?” Mr Chowdhury told ANI.
The BJP also claimed that Ms Banerjee was not attacked and she was “doing drama for sympathy”. “Is it Taliban that her convoy was attacked? Huge police force accompanies her. Who can get near her? 4 IPS officers are her security in-charge and must be suspended. Attackers don’t appear out of nowhere, they’ve to be arrested. She did drama for sympathy,” Bengal BJP vice president Arjun Singh told news agency ANI.
The BJP alleged Ms Banerjee was trying to turn a “simple accident” into a conspiracy, and demanded a CBI investigation. “It can happen that she met with an accident but to claim that she was deliberately pushed is not acceptable. She has a lot of security personnel guarding her round the clock,” BJP national general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya told news agency PTI.
Ms Banerjee is pitted in Nandigram against her former aide Suvendu Adhikari, who switched over to the BJP before the election dates were announced.
Ms Banerjee’s Trinamool Congress faces a big challenge from the BJP this time, with the rival party deploying its full might of top leaders including Prime Minister Narendra Modi in their Bengal campaign.
The Bengal election will take place over eight rounds and 33 days in a marathon schedule that the Trinamool alleges was stretched on directions from Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other top BJP leaders.