Mamata nephew talks of ‘gouging eyes, chopping hands’, opposition slams

Kolkata, June 23 (IANS) Stirring up a controversy, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s nephew and Trinamool Congress MP Abhishek Banerjee has threatened to “gouge out eyes and chop off hands” which are raised against the people of the state.

The opposition parties on Tuesday condemned the remarks, with the state BJP filing police complaints demanding arrest of the Lok Sabha member who made the aggressive remarks while addressing a party rally in Basirhat in North 24-Parganas on Monday.

“So long as Mamata Banerjee is there, whoever dares to glare at the people of Bengal, we can gouge their eyes out and throw them on the road. If hands are raised, we can chop off the hands,” said Abhishek.

He also asserted that unlike most other political parties, the Trinamool has not fallen at the feet of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Widely perceived as Mamata’s heir apparent, Abhishek has courted controversy earlier also for making snide remarks.

BJP national secretary Siddharth Nath Singh had served legal notices on him for making disparaging remarks about late prime minister Lal Bahadur Shastri — Singh’s grandfather.

“If Lal Bahadur Shastri had known how his grandson would turn out to be, he would have remained unmarried,” Abhishek had said at a party rally.

The Lok Sabha member from Diamond Harbour in South 24 Parganas district, faced brickbats on the social media after he wondered if the massive agitation by Jadavpur University students demanding the resignation of the vice chancellor was actually to secure the liberty to have drugs inside the campus.

Earlier in January, the 27-year-old who also heads the party’s youth wing, was slapped by a person who was then almost lynched by Trinamool activists.

Demanding his immediate arrest, state Bharatiya Janata Party president Rahul Sinha said the party has not only filed police complaints but will also approach the Calcutta High Court seeking legal action.

“Abhishek should be immediately arrested for the remarks. We have filed a first information report (FIR) before both the Kolkata and Basirhat police seeking immediate legal action against him,” said Sinha.

“His words are spurring violence and we feel they are directed at the BJP. We will file a petition before the high court for immediate legal action against Abhishek,” added Sinha.

“When human civilisation has moved long long way from the principle of an eye for an eye and tooth for a tooth, I don’t understand making such a remark in this age. This is straight forward criminal intimidation,” Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury said.

“The remarks made by Abhishek are condemnable… Indian politics doesn’t permit anyone to say such things. This in no way is going to help Mamata Banerjee and her party … rather it will do damage,” said Congress leader Meem Afzal.

“Abhishek’s comments reflect the DNA of the Trinamool. The Trinamool’s DNA is that of a dictator inspired by the invader Mahmud of Ghazni,” BJP national secretary Siddharth Nath Singh said.

Flooded with comments and criticism against the Trinamool MP, #AbhishekBanerjee trended on micro-blogging site Twitter.

Several other Trinamool leaders too have been in the spotlight for making hate speeches.

Actor-turned-Trinamool MP Tapas Paul had created a nationwide outrage after he was caught on successive tapes exhorting his party men to kill Marxist workers and threatened to “let loose my boys to rape their women”.

Infamous for making inflammatory speeches, Trinamool’s Birbhum district president Anubrata Mandal had exhorted his partymen during the 2013 rural polls to set ablaze independent candidates’ houses and hurl bombs at the police if they tried to prevent them.

Party legislator from Labhpur in Birbhum district Manirul Islam had publicly threatened to behead a Congress leader from the district and went on to claim how he had “squashed” three people under his feet for committing atrocities against women.

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