Attack on panchayat worker an act of terrorism: Gurudas



New Delhi: Deploring the attack on a gram panchayat employee in West Bengal as "barbaric", trade union leader Gurudas Dasgupta Thursday said the incident was an act of terrorism.

The gram panchayat employee, who was absent from office on Wednesday during the nationwide strike, was attacked today and his ear was "chopped off" allegedly by a Trinamool Congress worker in Murshidabad district.

"Atrocities are being committed on trade unionist and people who have joined the strike. This is (the attack on the employee) not only barbaric, this is terrorism and if such terrorism is sponsored by people in power then I call it a state terrorism," he told reporters here when his attention was drawn to the incident.

Dasgupta had yesterday dared West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to declare the strike as illegal, saying "if she is so confident that because of strike, somebody can be made illegal, let her do it in West Bengal... We will face it."

Right to strike is guaranteed by the Constitution and nobody can declare illegal, he said. Reiterating his stand, the veteran leader said "if right to strike is not constitutional, let them (the state government) suo motto take note of it and take us into custody. We are ready to face court and go to jail."

PTI