West Bengal: TMC Worker Shot Dead In Clash; Death Toll Rises To 11

A Trinamool Congress worker in Dinhata of Cooch Behar district in West Bengal was shot dead in a fresh clash with the opposition party. Violence has prevailed in the state since the state election commission announced the date for the panchayat polls.

West Bengal Panchayat Elections 2023

During a clash between the workers of Trinamool Congress (TMC) and the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party, a TMC worker was shot dead on Tuesday morning. Six others are said to be injured in the clash in Cooch Behar district’s Dinhata. 

The clash occurs a few days before the panchayat polls in West Bengal which are dated July 8.

Since the State Election Commission (SEC) announced the poll schedule, violence started in the state and so far reportedly 11 people have been killed with dozens being injured in political clashes across the state. 

According to the reports, a police officer posted in Cooch Behar told the media, “A political clash broke out between two groups. Seven persons sustained bullet injuries out of which one died. He has been identified as Babu Haque."

The new clash that has happened took place close to the unfenced portion of the India-Bangladesh border, reportedly. The police officer further mentioned, "There is a probability that Bangladeshi criminals might have been used by local leaders in the incident,” he also said, “Further investigation is going on.”

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee started to campaign for the TMC candidates across the state, on Monday with a rally in Cooch Behar. Cooch Behar has been in unrest with several reports of political clashes in the last few weeks.

Banerjee reportedly attacked the Border Security Force claiming that the border guard force was terrorising and killing people who live in the villages situated along the international border. 

Reportedly, the BSF in a statement denied the allegations made by the chief minister, they said, "No complaint of intimidating any person has been received so far by BSF or any other sister agency.”

The West Bengal government has sought 822 companies for the deployment of central paramilitary forces during the elections. After Calcutta High Court directed the SEC for the immediate deployment of the CRPF in sensitive constituencies, the state government and SEC challenged them but later the Supreme Court dismissed their appeals.