The BJP's planned march to the West Bengal state secretariat has become a topic of contention with the ruling Trinamool Congress denying permission for the same. This however has not deterred the party, and BJP workers have gathered in large numbers for the 'Nabanna Chalo' agitation and are raising slogans against the state government. The state secretariat, Nabanna is located close to Kolkata, in Howrah district.
The Free Press Journal's Prema Rajaram reported that four rallies have began towards State Secretariat Nabanna a short while ago. At the same time, BJP workers are protesting in the lane opposite Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s house. While the Chief Minister is reportedly not at her residence, the police have detained the workers. Police have also lathi charged party workers in the Dankuni area of Hoogly district.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had earlier declared a two day holiday at Nabanna, citing sanitization requirements. Reportedly, the government had declared this some time ago.
According to an NDTV report, Bengal BJP chief Dilip Ghosh has echoed similar sentiments, stating that "we will knowingly break Section 144 at Nabanna". He had also accused other political parties including the TMC of holding protests and rallies.
Visuals shared by news agency ANI show a heavy police deployment outside the BJP state headquarters in Kolkata even as a massive number of party workers and supporters gather in protest.
At the helm of affairs at present is BJP Youth leader Tejasvi Surya. The Bengaluru South MP took to Twitter on Thursday, writing in Bengali that he had just reached the city. "I heard that Mamata Di had closed the secretariat before the protest of the Youth Front tomorrow. This fear is very good," he added.
Going by Tejasvi Surya's Twitter posts, the Opposition's move has not deterred him. Taking to the microblogging platform, he shared videos of himself paying homage to Dr Syama Prasad Mookerjee at his memorial home in Kolkata. He also shared photos where he can be seen visiting the birth home of Swami Vivekananda with ABVP karyakartas.
It is not clear whether the protest march would be halted.