West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee today visited the families of four persons who died in clashes with security forces at a polling booth in Cooch Behar district on Saturday. The tragic incident had earlier sparked some sharp exchanges between the ruling Trinamool Congress and the opposition BJP.
In a tweet posted today by the Trinamool, the party shared a picture of Ms Banerjee holding a baby in Sitalkuchi, about 680 kilometres from Kolkata, where the violence was reported.
"No one can understand your pain better than Bengal's daughter. Moving image from @MamataOfficial's visit to grieving families of Sitalkuchi genocide," the tweet said.
Speaking at a gathering in Sitakulchi today, Ms Banerjee promised to erect a martyr's memorial for those who were killed and referred to the incident as a sacrifice for democracy.
"If I say something, may be I will get another EC notice, but we are taking a decision to have memorials for all those who were killed...keep a place for this, I will come here after it's done," she said.
Four persons were shot dead on Saturday outside a polling booth in Sitakulchi while polling was taking place in the fourth phase of the West Bengal Assembly election.
The violence unfolded after a man fainted at the polling booth, sparking rumours that he was beaten up by the security personnel. A mob gathered around the area and some people tried snatching weapons from the CISF troops, police officials said. This led the central forces to open fire.
Ms Banerjee accused the forces of "murder", blaming Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah for the incident. She also called it a "planned attack".
Condoling the deaths, PM Modi slammed the Chief Minister and her party, saying they were "jittery" about the groundswell of support for the BJP.