New Delhi: West Bengal Bharatiya Janata Party President Dilip Ghosh on Friday lambasted at the state police for “dilly-dallying” over granting permission to Union Home Minister Amit Shah for his proposed rally scheduled on March 1 in Kolkata. Also Read - Home Minister Has Asked States to Take Action Against People Involved in Hoarding, Black Marketing During Lockdown: MHA
“We are yet to get permission from the police for the rally. The police department is saying board exams will be on during that period and we can’t use loudspeakers. They have cited this reason and are dilly-dallying,” Ghosh said. Also Read - Assam Police Arrests Opposition MLA Over 'Objectionable' Remarks on COVID-19 Quarantine Camps
Shah is scheduled to address a rally at Shaheed Minar ground where the BJP’s state unit wants to felicitate him for the passage of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA). His rally comes ahead of the municipal polls in the state scheduled for next month. Also Read - Mamata Ropes in Abhijit Banerjee on COVID-19 Advisory Panel For West Bengal
Ghosh alleged that the permit was being delayed unnecessarily to “politicize the matter”. Shaheed Minar ground, he said, was neither located near a school nor is it in the vicinity of a residential area.
He also said no examination is scheduled for that day as the secondary exams will have ended by then. The higher secondary examinations will begin from March 12 to March 27 and restrictions are in place on the use of loudspeakers due to that, Ghosh added.
This is not the first time the BJP is facing trouble from the Kolkata Police, that comes under the jurisdiction of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. Last month, a set of saffron leaders were detained near Tollygunge Phari for conducting a rally allegedly without a permit.
The Trinamool Congress (TMC) government has also denied police permission to Amit Shah for rallies several times before when he was the BJP president.
Speaking on the upcoming polls, Ghosh said that his party is fully prepared but ample time should be given to parties for campaigning as the elections are likely to be held in mid-April right after the board exams which will continue till the end of March.
Sources at the State Election Commission (SEC) had reportedly announced that the Bengal municipal polls will be held between April 12 and April 26 for elections to 107 civic bodies and the Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC). The election is being termed as “mini Assembly polls”, a prep-voting ahead of the 2021 state election.
With PTI inputs