NEW DELHI: Hours before Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee (66) takes oath on Wednesday as the chief minister for the third time, the saffron lobby became active in a bid to unnerve her, citing the deteriorating law and order situation in the state.
On Tuesday, the Prime Minister personally called up Governor Jagdeep Dhankar, who is to administer oath to Mamata, hours after the Home Ministry sought a status report from him on the law and order situation in the state.
Dhankar went on record in Kolkata to say that the PM had expressed anguish over the deteriorating law and order situation following reports of post-poll violence from several states.
Sources in the Home Ministry said the government is awaiting a report from the Governor, following reports that at least 12 persons were killed in the post-poll outcome violence.
Mamata was, however, quick to blame the BJP for engineering the violence after failing to capture the state democratically through elections. She called for calm even as BJP President Jagat Prakash Nadda landed in Kolkata on Tuesday to preside over the day-long protests on Wednesday.
While the BJP claimed six of its party workers were killed and the homes of several torched, the Trinamool Congress said five of its supporters were killed, three of them in East Burdwan and one in Hooghly.
SECURITY TO NANDIGRAM RO: In a related development, the Election Commission on Tuesday provided additional security to the Returning officer of Nandigram; it also directed the West Bengal Chief Election Officer to ensure the safe custody of all election records and paraphernalia.
The Election Commission, meanwhile, has indicated that it stands by the decision of the Nandigram returning officer declaring BJP's Suvendu Sarkar elected and the only option available to Mamata is to file an election petition before the High Court.
VHP THREATENS RETALIATION: The Vishwa Hindu Parishad, meanwhile, has threatened to retaliate unless the ongoing post-poll violence ceases in West Bengal; it has claimed TMC goons were trying to intimidate Hindus through violence, arson and looting.
In a statement, central secretary general Milind Parande warned: "The Hindu society also can take recourse to self-defence."