KOLKATA: A Trinamool Congress leader from Birbhum district, West Bengal, has threatened to break legs of two opposition leaders if they try to come back to his territory again. Anubrata Mondal, issued a warning that prompted a rise in political temperatures ahead of next year's panchayat polls. “I don't know who they are, I don't care. If they create trouble we will break their arms and legs,” Mondal said.
Abdul Mannan of the Congress, and Bikash Bhattacharya of the CPM were supposed to meet villagers protesting against a land they had given for an industrial park being used for a housing colony and university called Biswa Bangla. However, the stage built for meeting was found torn down, allegedly by Trinamool supports. Mannan reportedly got into a tiff with the police for over 90 minutes, later leaving for Kolkata.
It has been said that when the two opposition leaders were approximately 2 km away from the broken stage, they were stopped by police. They were told that they could not go further as their presence may trigger a law and order problem. A scuffle ensued, with the leaders eventually turning back. Soon after, Mondal arrived at the spot and said, “I don't care who they were... Congress or CPM or what... The project here is a great development, many people will get jobs and if they create trouble, their arms and legs will be broken. I will not tolerate anyone disturbing the project.” When told some villagers had beaten up Trinamool supporters, he ordered authorities to arrest them immediately. He added that if action was not taken, he will “set fire to the house of the villagers.”
Responding to the threats, CPM's Bikash Bhattacharya said, “He is a mad person and a goonda combined. His statement is childish but extremely provocative and he should be made to realise what he has said is criminal. And I want to tell him, we will return to Birbhum again and again.” The conflict began when the Left Front government acquired 300 acres at Shibpur Mouza near Shantiniketan to build an industry hub. Later, it said real estate, not industry, would be developed. In 2009, the villagers who had given the land protested, with Trinamool leading the agitation.