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Opinion

Bengal Policemen Deny Shooting BJP Worker Amid Conflicting Claims About Killer Shotgun

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The West Bengal Police have charged top national and state leaders of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) under different sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) for the violence at the demonstration in the city of Siliguri, North Bengal , Monday. At least two FIRs have been submitted.

A BJP worker, Ulen Roy, was killed with a shotgun during a pitched battle between BJP workers and policemen that prevented two processions from advancing towards Uttar Kanya, the secretariat in North Bengal.

State police said in a statement Tuesday that Roy was killed with a shotgun that police do not use and alleged that the people at the rally carried firearms to incite violence.

On Wednesday, the BJP’s national secretary general, Kailash Vijayvargiya, and the head of the party’s national information and technology cell, Amita Malviya, posted videos showing a policeman with a shotgun and said they overturned the state’s claim. However, the location of the video recording was unclear. The policeman was not seen firing the weapon either.

None of the senior Siliguri or Jalpaiguri police officers spoke to the media about the FIRs. Officials from the New Jalpaiguri Police Station, where the FIRs were housed, were unwilling to mention the sections of the IPC under which the charges were brought. They only said that the BJP leaders appointed in the FIRs include Vijayvargiya, State President Dilip Ghosh, Bharatiya National President Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) Tejasvi Surya and BJYM State President Saumitra Khan.

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The FIRs also list thousands of BJP workers as defendants, but do not name them or specify any numbers, an official said on condition of anonymity.

The seven members of the BJP Lok Sabha from the North Bengal districts are also listed in the FIRs.

Praveen Agarwal, BJP Siliguri district president, said: “Many leaders, whose names are listed in the FIRs, were not even present at the two rallies.”

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