Bengal govt asks police, administration to stay alert after B’desh violence


A day after the state intelligence department issued an alert following the communal unrest in Bangladesh, the Mamata Banerjee-led West Bengal government on Monday instructed the administration and the police to stay alert and not allow the spread of any kind of communal instigation in the state.

The state government has sent written instructions to all the Police Commissionerates, Additional CPs, SPs, DIGs and IGPs, IG (IB) of North Bengal, Regional IGs, ADGs, and DGP of Railways, urging them to be vigilant and take immediate action in case of any untoward incident.

“There is Fateha-Dawaz-Daham on Tuesday and the district administrations have been asked to keep a strict watch on the sensitive areas. All the bordering districts have been put on high alert. The District Magistrates and SPs have been asked to instruct all the police stations to stay alert. Any kind of spread of provocative or communal messages will be strictly dealt with,” a senior official of the state Home Department said.

The state government’s instructions came after an alert was issued by the state intelligence department on Sunday. In the wake of the incidents of vandalism and arson on Hindu temples and Durga Puja pandals in Noakhali and Chittagong districts in Bangladesh, and considering the immersion of Durga idols followed by Fateha-Dawaz-Daham in West Bengal, the state intelligence department had issued an alert to all the districts, particularly the bordering ones, asking them to sensitise the officers to avoid any kind of untoward incident.

“Since October 13, social media platforms have been flooded with posts of vandalism of Durga Puja pandals in Bangladesh. Centering these issues, the bordering districts have become hyper sensitive and the leaders of different Hindu fundamentalist organisations have become pro-active and are delivering press statements and urging the Prime Minister to take necessary steps for the immediate relief of the Sanatani people of Bangladesh,” the alert had said.

It added, “It is pertinent to mention here that immersion of Durga idols in West Bengal has already begun and will continue till October 18, while the Muslim festival of Fateha-Dawaz-Daham is scheduled to be held on October 18 and 19.

“We will not tolerate any kind of communal unrest in the state and all the district administrations and the police have been asked to handle any kind of communal situation strictly,” the official added.