Kolkata, Apr 3 (PTI) A rally was taken out in the city today by around 2000 people, including Left intellectuals against recent communal clashes across West Bengal.

The rally, under the banner ‘Anti-communal Public Initiative’ (Samprodayikata Birodhi Gano-Udyog), was attended by CPI-M leader and former Kolkata Mayor Bikash Ranjan Bhattacharya, film maker Tarun Majumder, CPI(M) leader Satarup Basu among others.

Bhattacharya said, “This rally calls for strict measures by the state government to stop the orgy of violence and arrest and exemplary punishment of those involved. We also demand those responsible for the loss of lives be brought to book.”

He said, “We protest the cycle of violence prevailing in many parts of the state in the past one week during Ram Navami processions by BJP and Trinamool Congress and the brandishing of arms in many Ramnavami processions, including flaunting of swords by children.” Majumder said, “Despite my problem in walking, I wanted to join the rallyists as I could not sit at home.” Left-wing students of different city colleges and universities, including Jadavpur University and Presidency University, also formed part of the procession which began in front of Mahajati Sadan and ended at Rani Rashmoni Road.

Bhattacharya said, “We have asked everyone to join us, and there is no political colour.”

Meanwhile, around 100 intellectuals have signed a statement asking people to join a rally from Esplanade to Rabindra Sadan on April 8 for unity and brotherhood.

The statement was signed by eminent poet Sankha Ghosh, literateur Nabanita Dev Sen, theatre activist-actor Kaushik Sen among others.

It also called upon leaders and activists of all political parties to join the rally.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.