Bengal polls: BJP supporters continue protests over party's candidate selection

·2-min read

Kolkata, Mar 16 (PTI) BJP workers from various parts of West Bengal continued their protests on Tuesday outside the party's state election office in Kolkata over the selection of candidates for the assembly polls, laying bare the rift between old-timers and new entrants.

BJP supporters from Canning West, Magrahat, Kultali, Joynagar and Bishnupur were protesting outside the Hastings office of the party since the morning, often getting involved in scuffles among themselves, forcing the police to intervene.

'We want immediate withdrawal Arnab Roy's candidature from the Canning West seat. He joined BJP from Trinamool Congress only five days back and has been given the nomination,' a BJP activist from the constituency said.

The protesters claimed that TMC leaders involved in corruption have been given nominations by the BJP.

Some of those leaders are also accused of atrocities against BJP members, they said.

'We will sit idle and not work for the party's election campaign if the candidates are not withdrawn immediately,' said Ronny Manna, a long-time BJP worker from Magrahat.

A section of the protesters tried to remove the barricades outside the main gate and enter the office compound, following which the police had to step in.

The protests outside the BJP's election office and different parts of the state have been underway since Sunday evening after the announcement of the party's second list of 63 candidates for the third and fourth phase of elections in West Bengal.

The protests over the selection of candidates took violent turns in certain places with BJP supporters vandalising party offices and locking up central leaders, besides blocking roads by burning tyres.

The BJP said that they were looking into the issues, maintaining that the protests were a result of the party growing in size.

'The party is growing in size as more and more people join. Hence, the number of aspirants has swelled. There are bound to be some problems, but that will be addressed soon,' BJP's state general secretary Sayantan Basu said. PTI SUS SOM SOM