Kolkata : Tension ran high in central Kolkata on Thursday after the Kolkata Police rained lathis on Left Front supporters.

The district Left Front had called a march towards Lalbazar, the headquarters of the city police to protest against the lawlessness in the city. The Left supporters organised rallies from different approach roads leading to Lalbazar.

Trouble started after the Left Front supporters tried to break the barricades set up by the police to handle the crowd of protestors. The police alleged that the Left Front supporters pelted stones on them on Ganesh Chandra Avenue.

In retaliation the police resorted to lathicharge on the agitators. The police also chased away the Left Front leaders who were addressing the gathering on B B Ganguly Street near Lalbazar and assaulted them on the makeshift podium.

Many Left Front supporters including CPI(M) MP Md Salim and former West Bengal minister Manab Mukherjee were injured in the process. Some journalists were also injured in the incident. The police also allegedly damaged window screens of some trucks in which the Left Front supporters came to the spot.  Biman Bose, former CPIM general secretary and Left Front chairman criticised the police for the lathi charge and said many women supporters were injured in the incident.

A few days ago the police made lathi charge on the leftist supporters in a similar demonstration organised by the Left Front committee on Red Road. Television grabs showed police personnel baton-charging women protesters, many of whom bled profusely. Salim alleged that police carried out planned attack on the instruction of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.

“We condemn the way the participants in the peaceful demonstration were tortured,” Bose said.

Ambar Mukherjee

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