Kolkata | Jagran News Desk: Ahead of the beginning of the much-awaited assembly polls in West Bengal, the Left parties have called for a 'bandh' in the state after several of its workers were allegedly beaten up by police during a march to Nabanna.

This comes at a time when schools in West Bengal were preparing to reopen after nearly a year since the central government announced a nationwide coronavirus-induced lockdown.

Condemning the attack, the Left parties have said that the 12-hour bandh will continue till 6 pm. "The Left Front has called for 12 hours bandh in West Bengal on Friday from to protest over the incident where left party workers were beaten up and water cannons were used against them by Police during a march to Nabanna in Kolkata," said Left Front Chairman Biman Bose.

Throwing light on the Nabanna incident, the Left parties, which have allied with the Congress for the upcoming polls, have said that their workers were stopped by the state police at SN Banerjee Road who allegedly used tear gas shells and water cannons against the activists.

"The way police unleashed atrocities on the participants in the march to Nabanna, it created a situation somewhat akin to the historic Jallianwala Bagh incident," Bose said.

Meanwhile, Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress (TMC) government in West Bengal have warned the protestors and mandated state government employees to be present at their offices on Friday.

"All-State Government offices, including those provided with Grants-in-aid by State Government, shall remain open and all employees shall report for duty. No casual leave for absence or any leave shall be granted to any employee nor shall there be any exemption on the ground of shift allocation," the state government has said.

This comes just months before the assembly elections in the state where the TMC is up against the Left alliance and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). The TMC had swept the polls in 2016 but had suffered a major setback in the 2019 Lok Sabha after the BJP won 18 of the 42 seats in the state.

Posted By: Abhinav Gupta