The AIMIM which has emerged as a challenger to the TMC in Murshidabad district has said that it will launch an agitation if police fail to arrest a TMC office bearer and the main accused in the double murder.
Two of the most trenchant critics of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) – the Trinamool Congress (TMC) and Hyderabad Lok Sabha MP Asaduddin Owaisi’s All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) now find themselves pitched against each other over the murder of two anti-CAA protesters in Bengal’s Murshidabad district on January 29.
The AIMIM which has emerged as a challenger to the TMC in Murshidabad district has said that it will launch a movement in the district’s Jalangi community block if police fail to arrest Tohiruddin Mondal, the TMC Jalangi (north) block unit president who is the main accused and has been named in the FIR.
Muslims comprised 66.27 per cent of the district’s population during the 2011 census. Both the victims were Muslims.
“We will launch a bigger movement this month if police fail to arrest the accused. People have understood that TMC leaders are stabbing the movement against CAA and national register of citizens (NRC) in the back,” said AIMIM’s Murshidabad unit president Asadul Sheikh.
District police superintendent A S Yadav said, “On the basis of two FIRs we have already arrested three persons and they are in police custody. Mondal and some other accused men are on the run. Raids are on to nab them.”
The AIMIM is said to have that set up the platform, CAA Birodhi Nagorik Mancha (citizens’ forum against CAA) that called a bandh to protest the citizenship law. Two of its supporters, Anarul Biswas (55) and Salauddin Sheikh (17) died when Mondal’s associates allegedly attacked the protesters with guns and bombs.
AIMIM leaders warned that said they will not wait indefinitely for the police to arrest Mondal. Sheikh said, “We have come to know that the TMC is spreading a rumour that our party members were involved in the violence.”
“On January 29, Maulana Sajjad Nomani of the All India Muslim Personal Law Board called the bandh and members of the Manch were supporting it. Mondal and his associates opened fire on them in front of eyewitnesses. Two innocent people were killed,” said Sheikh.
Local TMC legislator Abdur Razzak claimed that there were some AIMIM supporters in the anti-CAA movement on January 29. He said, “We cannot deny that MIM tried to spread its base in Murshidabad. But most of their supporters returned to mainstream parties when they understood the ideology of AIMIM.”
He said, “I have information that some youths from the Sahebnagar area, where the violence took place, are still supporting AIMIM. They might have been involved in the violence. Like the police, I am also clueless about Mondal’s location.”
The AIMIM district president said, “Right now we have more than 4.5 lakh members in Murshidabad district and 11,000 of them are from Jalangi.”
“In the last one year, the number of AIMIM members has drastically increased in Murshidabad. We are going to field candidates in more than 70 seats in the seven municipal bodies of the district in the coming elections,” said Sheikh. AIMIM did not field any candidate in Murshidabad in the previous civic polls.
Sheikh said, “People of Murshidabad saw the real face of TMC in the Jalangi bloodshed. We are ready to lead the movement against the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in this district.”
BJP’s Murshidabad (north) unit president, Gouri Shankar Ghosh described both the TMC and the AIMIM as terrorists for opposing the CAA. “Those who oppose a law passed by Parliament are nothing but terrorists. The TMC and AIMIM, along with some other parties, are working against the nation for the sake of votes,” he said.