BIMLAGARH(SUNDARGARH):Tension ran high at the Bimlagarh railway siding, about 100 kilometres from Rourkela, in Koida block of Sundargarh district when supporters of CPM and ruling BJD clashed on Wednesday evening to take control over mineral transportation, having ramification to the rural poll.
At least 20 persons were injured and to arrest the situation from flaring up, the Sundargarh administration imposed prohibitory order at the troubled site. Two Zilla Parishad seats of Koida block will go to poll on February 15 and the CPM, BJD and BJP are at loggerheads for long to engage their supporters at the siding.
The Bimlagarh railway siding has dominion of CITU, the labour arm of CPM. The CPM members led by Bonai MLA of CPM Laxman Munda were on Wednesday guarding the railway siding to prevent a new contractor, Ashok Agarwal from starting mineral transportation. Agarwal was supported by the BJD members who formed the Bimlagarh Anchalik Committee (BAC) to engage their supporters in mineral loading and unloading jobs. Subsequently, the BJD supporters turned up at site and a face-off prevailed till the CPM followers around 4 pm resorted to stone pelting and the BJD supporters retaliated.
Besides the BJD and CPM members few supporters of BJP present there were also injured. It was alleged that the CPM supporters used bows and arrows to attack their opponents, but there was no official confirmation.
Although, it was the jurisdiction of the Government Railway Police (GRP), the Rourkela Police rushed to the spot and dispersed the mob.
Rourkela-based Superintendent of Railway Police (SRP), KS Kanwar said as per preliminary report, eight injured BJD followers were sent to the Lahunipara Community Health Centre (CHC) and it was not immediately known if any CPM supporter was injured. He said prohibitory order has been clamped and no arrest was made yet in absence of written complaint. He said if required the GRP would sou moto register a case and arrest guilty persons.
Rourkela unit BJD president, AC Mohanty claimed it was a ‘goondraj’ unleashed by the CPM MLA, Laxman Munda and demanded strong action against CPM supporters. Senior CPM leader, Banamali Dhupal said the administration had taken time to decide on the entry of the new contractor after end of model code for the rural elections.