Published On: Wed, Jul 5th, 2017

Communal violence in Bengal over Facebook post

Kolkata: Communal violence broke out in West Bengal’s North 24 Parganas district following a Facebook post, triggering arson, and torching of vehicles, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said here on Tuesday.

Eyewitnesses said police were attacked and one of their vehicles torched

There were reports that the central government has rushed 300 paramilitary personnel to control the violence which spread to a few more areas on Tuesday.

“We support social media but the central government has an agenda. Sometimes it is to create a hate group and cause riots via Facebook. Yesterday’s incident is like that. There have been false posting of pictures which don’t have any link to reality,” Banerjee told the media here while replying to questions about rumours being spread through social media posts about incidents at Baduria under Basirhat sub-division.

She said the person who posted the objectionable matter on Facebook was arrested immediately.

“After his arrest things should have been controlled. But we saw another group went on rampage and increased the communal rift. I condemn this incident.. After the youth was arrested, road blockades were put up,” she said.

Banerjee said cars were also torched.

Eyewitnesses said police were attacked and one of their vehicles torched.

“We could not sleep the whole night yesterday. But I say this with regret that after doing so much there is still communal rioting. How many Facebook posts will you stop? If a Facebook post leads to communal riots, there won’t be worse times than this,” said Banerjee, urging both sides not to do politics with religion.

“Some religious leaders are doing this for the sake of money. I am sorry to say. Don’t play with fire. We have the list of cars that have been torched.”

She warned the rioters that nobody would be spared and said Facebook posts should be countered on Facebook itself and not by rushing on to the streets.

“Why are you on the streets and not countering it (the Faebook post) there (on Facebook)? If police had opened fire, 100 people would have died. I cannot fire on the masses.

“I warn both the community leaders, my patience should not be taken as my weakness. I will not tolerate this hooliganism. It is because of you that I had to face so much insults,” she said.

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