An MLA of the ruling BJP in Tripura, Arun Chandra Bhowmik, has reportedly asked the party workers to attack the Trinamool Congress leaders in ‘Talibani style’ when they arrived at the Agartala airport from Kolkata.
The BJP, however, distanced itself from the matter, saying it is the legislator’s personal view, and not that of the party.
While addressing a function in south Tripura’s Belonia on Wednesday, Bhowmik, who’s also a senior lawyer, alleged that incited by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, some Trinamool leaders are coming to Tripura to attack the BJP government.
“Whenever Trinamool leaders arrive at the Agartala airport from Kolkata, they should be attacked in Talibani style,” the septuagenarian politician said during the function, which was organised to felicitate Union Minister of State Pratima Bhowmik, the first Central minister from Tripura.
A video clip of his comments went viral on social media, inviting widespread criticism.
Incidentally, Bhowmik was the Chairman of the Trinamool unit in Tripura before joining the BJP in 2017.
Few days back, Tripura Assembly Deputy Speaker Biswa Bandhu Sen, who is also the BJP MLA from Dharmanagar, had asked people to physically attack the “Left minded government employees”.
Trinamool leader Subal Bhowmik has strongly criticised the reamrks of both Arun Bhowmik and Sen, saying that the party leaders in Kolkata are taking legal steps against the two BJP leaders.
Demanding the arrest of Arun Bhowmik and Sen, the Trinamool leader claimed that the party leaders were harassed on Wednesday night at a hotel in Agartala where they are staying.
“The incident happened after the BJP MLA made this provocative remark. Our party’s national General Secretary (Abhishek Banerjee) and many other leaders were attacked in Tripura earlier this month by the BJP workers and goons, and even the Tripura police registered false cases against them,” Subal Bhowmik told the media.
Meanwhile, the chief spokesperson of Tripura BJP, Subrata Chakraborty, said that the comments made by Arun Bhowmik were entirely his own views and the party cannot take any responsibility for them.
When contacted, Arun Bhowmik said that he used the word ‘Talibani’ to make people understand that the way the Trinamool is trying to harm the BJP government in Tripura, it needed a strong reaction.
“The use of the word ‘Talibani’ might create a misunderstanding, but my intention was just to narrate how to counter them with all seriousness to prevent Trinamool’s attempts to create troubles in Tripura,” the BJP lawmaker said.
With an eye on the Assembly polls in Tripura scheduled in 2023, Trinamool leaders, including Abhishek Banerjee and several ministers and MPs, are frequently visiting Tripura since last month to build the organisation and garner support in the BJP-ruled state.