Kolkata: Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Arjun Singh suffered head injuries on Sunday when police allegedly indulged in baton charge at Kankinara in West Bengal’s North 24 Parganas district to lift a road blockade by a group of persons.

Singh claimed Barrack pore police commissioner Manoj Verma struck him, causing a gash on his head. The parliamentarian was taken to Apollo hospital for treatment. The MP, wearing a blood-soaked shirt and a bandage on head, said Verma led a police contingent which attacked a “peaceful” protest by the BJP over the capture of its party office at Shyamnagar. “Police intentionally attacked me. I have received about 10 to 12 stitches,” said Singh after coming out of the hospital.

Verma too had a narrow escape after a crude bomb aimed at him missed the target, following which he fired in the air. Two of juniors received severe injuries. Both Shyamnagar and Kankinara come under the Barrackpore Lok Sabha constituency, of which Singh is the MP.

Several areas, including Bhatpara and Kankinara, in the constituency have been in the grip of violence since Singh won the election on a BJP ticket, having deserted the ruling Trinamool Congress, of which he was an MLA.

Fresh clashes broke out between the supporters of the two parties on Sunday over control of a party office at Shyamnagar, they said.

Earlier in the day, Singh’s vehicle was vandalised near Shyamnagar railway station. According to Ajay Thakur, DC-zone 1, Barrackpore police commissionerate, some miscreants attacked the Barrackpore MP’s car, smashing its windows.

“The matter has been reported to the police and an investigation is underway,” he said. The parliamentarian claimed that the TMC supporters attacked and damaged his car.

He also said that the ruling party was using force to capture BJP party offices at various places in Barrackpore constituency, a charge denied by the Trinamool Congress.

West Bengal Food and Supplies minister Jyotipriya Mallick asserted that it was the saffron party that had forcibly taken over the TMC’s party offices in Barrackpore.

“Arjun Singh should remember what his people had done to take over our party offices. Even Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had caught the BJP workers red-handed while they were painting a TMC office in saffron colour… Singh is responsible for the deterioration of law and order in the area over the past few months. Police have every right to bring the situation under control,” Mullick added.

More than 50 people, including some media persons, were injured in Sunday’s incident. A large contingent of police force have been deployed in the area.

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Source: ANI, PTI and other sources.

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