Agartala, June 3: Tripura Law Minister Ratan Lal Nath on Thursday said multiple cases have been filed against opposition CPI(M) MLA Bhanu Lal Saha at different police stations of the state for his "provocative statement" on social media earlier in the week, urging people to "resist ruling BJP goons" with sticks and pipes.
The CPI(M) will be responsible if any riot or law and order situation arises in the state, the minister said, adding that Saha's "instigatory remark" has been brought to the notice of Speaker Rebati Mohan Das. A senior police officer said the matter is under investigation, and any information will be provided only after a thorough probe is conducted into the case. Saha, a former minister, stirred a row on May 31 when he took to Facebook and said, "Keep sticks, da (sickle), iron pipes etc handy, irrespective of your age and gender, for resisting bricks, kicks, petrol bombs hurled by them.
Gather courage to face attackers. It's not a crime to pick up things for self defence. It's impossible to protect life and property without resistance. "O youth, turn into fire. Hundreds-thousands of youths should be ready. Resist lumpens and ruling party goons with courage. Join people from the locality and take charge." Defending his statement, the CPI(M) MLA, in an interview to a local TV channel, said on Wednesday that he gave a "call for resistance" as party members and supporters were repeatedly being attacked by activists of the BJP.
"These are unprovoked attacks, and that is why I had to give a call for resistance. I am ready to go to jail for my statement," the Bisalgarh legislator said. Nath, however, claimed that the CPI(M), which was ousted from power by the BJP-IPFT alliance, is "hatching a conspiracy to make a comeback through the backdoor". "It is in their (CPI-M leaders') nature to create anarchy in a planned manner. That is how the party ruled Tripura for 35 years. Bhanu Lal Saha and the CPI(M) will be responsible for the next riot or law and order situation in the state," Nath underlined.
"The controversial and provocative message was delivered with a deliberate attempt to create panic among people. The people now know the CPI(M) leaders well. I urge everyone to be alert and aware," the law minister added. Papia Datta, the general secretary of the BJP's state unit, had on Tuesday sought strict action against Saha, and said such a statement was "unbecoming" of a person who served as a teacher for several years.