Kolkata: Days after twin agitations by the Left Front evoked good response, a legislator of West Bengal`s ruling Trinamool Congress has now prescribed "thrashing" to teach the opposition a lesson so that they don`t dare to call shutdowns or strikes.
While the August 27 rally organised by the Left Front`s peasant fronts witnessed violence as a large number of protestors clashed with the police, the September 2 industrial strike called by the central trade unions and supported by 17 Left parties affected normal life in the city.
In a video grab broadcast by news channels on Saturday, Trinamool legislator Banamali Hazra from Bhatar in Burdwan district, is seen calling his party activists to teach the opposition a befitting lesson for calling shutdowns.
"They will have to be taught such a lesson that in future they don`t get a scope to call a shutdown. For that, if needed then `Prohareno Dhananjay` (Bengali euphuism for thrashing)," said Hazra.
"You all know in this area, thrashing is the last word. So, we will have come to that. In the name of strike, shutdown and bandhs, they are hoping to get support, but we will not allow them this opportunity. So `Prohareno Dhananjaya`," said the legislator amid loud cheers and claps by his supporters.
Strongly condemning Hazra`s comments, the opposition was unanimous in attacking Trinamool supremo and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee over the issue.
"Today, Hazra has become famous only because he called for thrashing the opposition. Trinamool leaders` claim to fame has always been making hate speeches," said Communist Party of India-Marxist MP Mohammad Salim.
"Trinamool leaders` claim to fame has been saying things like letting loose his boys for raping, to bomb police, and burn down houses. They have learnt the lessons what the chief minister has taught them," he said, referring to hate speeches by the Trinamool leaders including MP Tapas Paul who had threatened to "let loose his boys for raping" Marxist women.
Charging the Trinamool of having no respect for law and order or democracy, Congress MP Pradip Bhattacharya warned of an opposite reaction.
"Trinamool must realise that every action has an equal and opposite reaction and when it happens, they will not be able to handle it," he said.
BJP legislator Samik Bhattacharya too slammed Hazra for the comments saying they were a reflection of the Trinamool`s "culture".
Several Trinamool leaders in the past have courted controversies for making hate speeches. Mamata Banerjee`s nephew and party Lok Sabha member Abhishek Banerjee recently received flak for exhorting "gouging out eyes and chopping off hands" which are raised against the people of the state.