Halt on ‘Rath Yatra’: BJP to hold protest rallies, law violations across Bengal

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Kolkata, Dec 17 (IANS) The BJP on Monday kick-started a week-long protest by taking out a rally in Hooghly district against the Mamata Banerjee-government’s denial of permission to the party’s proposed “Rath Yatra” in West Bengal and threatened to hold law violation programmes wherever they are stopped.

State Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) President Dilip Ghosh, who led a protest rally in Hooghly district’s Arambag, said the party will hold similar demonstrations in all the districts within the next one week demanding reinstatement of democracy in Bengal.

“We will hold protest rallies and meetings across the state against the Trinamool government. Rallies will be held in all Bengal districts within one week. If we are stopped from holding rallies anywhere, we would resort to law violation programmes,” Ghosh said while leading the rally.

“We knew the state government would not grant us permission to hold the Rath Yatra rallies. They would try to deter the process. Hence, we have made alternative arrangements to reach out to the people of Bengal. The matter of Rath Yatra will be decided by the court,” he said.

The BJP was scheduled to hold the Rath Yatras, also christened “Ganatantra Bachao Yatra” or save democracy rally, from north Bengal’s Cooch Behar, South 24 Parganas district’s Gangasagar and Birbhum district’s temple town of Tarapith. But the state government on Saturday rejected its plea, stating there is “grave apprehension of major breach of peace and communal violence during and in the aftermath” of the programme.

The state unit of the saffron party moved the Calcutta High Court on Monday with a fresh plea, challenging the state government’s decision.

“There can either be rally or meeting or both, depending on the court’s verdict on the party proposed Rath Yatra programme. We want to highlight three things to the people of Bengal — the success of the Central government, the failure and bad governance of the state government and the NRC issue. We will reach out to people in every possible way,” Ghosh claimed.

He also warned that the state government would be solely responsible for any lapses in the law and order situation in Bengal.



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