Situation in Bengal’s Bhangar returning to normal

Kolkata: After three days of continuous protest and agitation over the “forcible” land acquisition for a Power Grid Corporation of India project, the situation in West Bengal’s Bhangar is slowly becoming normal, police said on Friday.

According to a police officer, there were no reports of violence since Thursday evening.

“The normalcy is being restored in the region. Most of the roadblocks are now removed except the one at Khamarait village. No violence or agitation is reported from Padmapukur, Tona, Gazipur and Machi Bhanga village since yesterday (Thursday),” Ashoktaru Mukherjee, Inspector of Bhangar police station, said.

“Police refrained from entering the villages till now as there is a sense of anger among the villagers,” the officer said.

Police also rubbished the theory of criminals being present in police uniform during Tuesday’s clash.

“There were no criminals in police uniforms. We always keep spare uniforms in the police vans. The villagers must have got hold of those uniforms from the vans that were deserted in the village following the clash,” he added.

Meanwhile, the private security company that guarded the under-construction power grid alleged guns and bullets went missing from their office on Tuesday.

A complaint has been lodged in the neighbouring Kashipur police station.

“Six guns and five round of bullets of security guards went missing from their office inside the power grid campus. We are investigating the matter,” Sibu Das, the Inspector of Kashipur police station, said.

The protest against proposed power grid in Bhangar peaked last Tuesday as villagers dug roads and felled tree trunks to obstruct the security forces, and fought pitched battle with police when they tried to enter the core conflict zones, including Padmapukur and Machi Bhanga.

Two person were shot and a few others got injured in the clash.

Police beat a retreat from the spot amid massive stone pelting by the villagers as some of their personnel got injured in the attack.