Tent collapse: case against BJP, decorator

Two days after a tent collapse at Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rally at Midnapore in Paschim Medinipur district left several people injured, the West Bengal police have filed a case of negligence against the organiser of the event, the State BJP unit, and the decorator of the venue.

“We have registered a case against the organiser [State BJP] and the decorator of the rally for extreme negligence under Sections 308 (attempt to commit culpable homicide not amounting to murder), 337 (causing hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others), 338 (causing grievous hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others) of the Indian Penal Code,” said Alok Rajoria, Superintendent of Police, Paschim Medinipur.

No one has been named as accused in the case so far, he added.

The State BJP leadership has blamed the police and the district administration for the incident. Accusing the police of “neglecting their duties”, State BJP president Dilip Ghosh said: “They never bothered to probe the arrangements for the PM’s rally.”

State BJP general secretary Sayantan Basu said that his party will lodge a case against the district police and the administration.

Forensic experts who visited the venue pointed out several flaws in the tent’s construction. “The tent collapsed as the ground became soft due to rain and the poles supporting it were dug only three to four inches into the ground,” said Chitrakho Sarkar, a senior official of the State Forensic Science Laboratory. Also, the poles were not fastened properly and accumulation of rainwater on the tent’s roof played a key role in its collapse, he added.

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