Howrah/Kolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday termed as 'unfortunate' the killing of a youth for protesting against eve-teasing and expressed her annoyance over failure of police to arrest the assailant saying, action should have been taken on the first day itself.
"There was trouble between two groups you know. One incident has happened. It is an unfortunate incident. It has also to be found out which woman has been teased," she told reporters without elaborating after visiting the victim Arup Bhandari's residence at Salkia in Howrah city during the day.
"Police should have taken action on the first day itself (of the occurrence of the incident)," Banerjee, who also holds the Home portfolio, said expressing her annoyance over the role of the police after she met the victim's parents.
Banerjee asked the police to arrest the culprits at the earliest and assured the victim's parents that they would not be spared. "Wherever the culprits are in hiding now, they would be punished."
The Chief Minister said Arup was a 'good boy' and a civic volunteer. "Like any other person my sympathy is for him...It was an unfortunate incident, it should not have happened," she told the bereaved family members at their residence during her 15-minute stay.
"I want the guilty to be punished. My son died trying to save women from eve-teasing," Arup's mother told Banerjee.
WB Governor K N Tripathi also condemned the incident and said the police should take strong steps to arrest the guilty.
Referring to media reports that the boy was beaten up by drunken youths for protesting against their lewd comments against two girls at the sidelines of a programme, he said, both the acts were condemnable.
Arup, a 20-year-old college student, succumbed to injuries on Monday after he was beaten up for protesting against lewd comments passed at two girls during immersion of idols at the culmination Saraswati puja.
Meanwhile, Left Front, SUCI and Congress observed a 12-hour bandh in Howrah district during the day demanding immediate arrest of the culprits.
Taxis and buses were few and some shops were closed due to the bandh.
Congress staged a blockade at Bagnan station in Howrah district and at Nimdighi on NH 6, party sources said, adding at least 12 Congress supporters were detained.