Farmer rally turns violent in Kolkata, several injured

Soon, the rapid action force personnel were deployed.

Violent scenes were witnessed outside the West Bengal secretariat as protesters from left parties along with members of farmers' unions clashed with the police.

On Monday, the Left Front supporters plans to gather at five places and then march towards the state secretariat.

Several areas in Kolkata and Howrah district turned into battlefields as the Left activists used sticks and bamboo poles to break guard walls and barricades and rained bricks and stones on police. "This is undemocratic. Nobody was carrying arms or bombs that the police attacked them", Mr. Mannan said. How can they arrest some people for that? At a press conference later, Supratim Sarkar, additional commissioner of police (III) regretted the assault on scribes and said the incident will be investigated.

Left Front cadres and supporters fought pitched battles with the police on the main streets in the city and suburbs leading to Nabanna, the State secretariat, on Monday.

Chief minister, Mamata Banerjee, was out of the city.

Bose condemned the arrest of Left Front lawmakers and demanded their "unconditional release" and accused police of committing "excesses" to thwart the march.

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The Left Front had chose to march to Nabanna to protest on various issues including alleged corruption in governance by the Trinamool Congress.

The Left party sources on the other hand said many of their leaders including former state minister Kanti Ganguly, Foward Bloc leader Naren Chatterjee and a number of workers were injured when the police resorted to the 'unprovoked batoncharge'. As Basu put it, "Police has lathicharged the Left workers brutally without provocation".

Sympathising with the injured journalists, Communist Party of India-Marxist state Secretary Surjya Kanta Mishra said it only showed "the panic in the state government".

Claiming the rally's success, Dr Mishra declared that the Left would observe a statewide protest on Tuesday.

A barricade erected by the police on the way to the state secretariat in Howrah. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is in Birbhum district to attend an administrative meeting.

BJP leader Rahul Sinha demanded strict action against the police officials responsible for carrying out the baton charge on protestors.

  • Myrtle Hill