The bomb blast on Wednesday night at the Nimtita railway station in West Bengal’s Murshidabad district, which left 25 people, including state minister Jakir Hossain, injured, was the result of ‘internal feud’ and ‘political rivalry’ among the cadres of the ruling Trinamool Congress, people in the Railway Ministry aware of the investigation said on Thursday.
The railway officials’ remarks came after West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday pointed towards a “conspiracy” behind the bomb attack that left her Labour Minister Hossain seriously injured.
Without taking the name of any particular party or individual, Banerjee alleged that some people were “pressurising” Hossain to join their party. The West Bengal government on Thursday handed over the probe into the matter to the Criminal Investigation Department (CID).
Banerjee even held the railways responsible for the incident since it took place on its premises when crude bombs were hurled on Hossain by unidentified persons on Wednesday night when he was walking towards the Nimtita railway station to board a train for Kolkata.
“Railways is to be blamed for the blast at Murshidabad where minister Jakir Hossain was injured. It was a planned conspiracy to kill him. Not a responsibility of the state government, Railways and Centre are to be blamed,” Banerjee said.
The Chief Minister, along with senior Trinamool Congress leaders, went to the state-run SSKM hospital in Kolkata to inquire about the health of Hossain.
A Railway Ministry official in the know of the developments said that Hossain’s party and the CPI(M) are political rivals, as the Trinamool Congress leader had defeated CPI(M) candidate Somnath Singh Rai in the last Assembly polls.
The official pointed out that CPI(M) had organised a protest near Trinamool headquarters Nabanna last week, where the police had resorted to lathi charge to control the crowd, adding that one of the CPI(M) workers had succumbed to the injuries he sustained in the lathi charge due to which there is an environment of tension in the area.
The official said that the CPI(M) had called a ‘rail roko’ from 11 a.m. on Thursday as a mark of protest.
The official said that there are also reports of internal feud between the ruling party workers. He added that Hossain had also filed a police complaint against two Trinamool Congress members in 2017, who were giving him death threats.
“This incident is prima facie a result of political rivalry between the Trinamool Congress and the CPI(M) and many have some links to the internal feud among the ruling party cadres,” the official said.
He said that the resulting chaos may disrupt train operations and cause inconvenience to the general public.
The railway official added that the West Bengal government should tighten the law and order situation in the state and ensure that the culprits are caught at the earliest to restore normalcy in the area.
Earlier in the day, the Railway Ministry had described the bomb blast as an “unfortunate” incident, saying that law and order is a state subject and the state police are responsible for the same.
“It may be noted that law and order is a state subject and state police are fully responsible for the same. Law and order on railway platforms is also under the purview of the Government Rail Police (GRP) of the state government,” the ministry said in a statement.