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Central teams sit idle, Bengal government says ‘busy’ fighting corona, can’t escort officials

The central team left the BSF office around 4.10 pm and visited some pockets in south Kolkata.    

Published: 22nd April 2020 08:40 AM  |   Last Updated: 22nd April 2020 08:40 AM   |  A+A-

Central representatives’ team convoy escorted by the police moves around the city during the lockdown in Kolkata on Tuesday | PTI

Express News Service

KOLKATA: The two central teams visiting West Bengal for an on-the-spot assessment of the implementation of lockdown measures taken to fight novel coronavirus sat idle at a guest house of BSF’s South Bengal frontier headquarters in south Kolkata as the Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool government allegedly refused to send its representatives with them.

The team, left the BSF headquarters around 10 am, but had to return after travelling for a kilometre. The five-member team, led by Apurva Chandra, the additional secretary, Department of Defence, was scheduled to meet Bengal Chief Secretary Rajiva Sinha at Nabanna, the state secretariat, around 11 am on Tuesday.

“Yes, they were scheduled to meet me at my office. But I got to go for an emergency meeting and so could not give them time,’’ said Sinha.

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Sinha went to the BSF’s headquarters around 2.20 pm and held a meeting with the members. Sources said the state government allowed the team to visit some places in Kolkata after a letter from the Ministry of Home Affairs arrived asking the government’s cooperation.

ALSO READ | MHA directs West Bengal not to obstruct working of central teams assessing lockdown measure

The central team left the BSF office around 4.10 pm and visited some pockets in south Kolkata.    Debashmita Roy, deputy commissioner of police, south-east division, went to the BSF headquarters and reportedly informed the central team that Kolkata Police would not be available to escort them.

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