Tripura TMC leader arrested

Panna Deb charged with ‘abetment to suicide’ of young relative

A court on Sunday sent a senior leader of the Trinamool Congress (TMC) to three-day police remand in connection with a case related to abetment to suicide. Earlier in the day, Panna Deb was arrested from her residence in the Indranagar locality here by the Investigating Officer who has been probing the suicide.

The deceased, a young woman who was reportedly suffering from a mental disorder for the past 14 years, was a close relative of the TMC leader and was staying in same residence as Ms. Deb with her mother. The disappearance of the victim’s father many years ago is said to be a mystery.

“The deceased left a ‘suicide note’ in which she named and blamed Panna Deb of torturing her. She wrote she was forced to take the extreme step because of unbearable torture,” a police officer said.

Ms. Deb, a former Councillor of the Agartala Municipal Corporation (AMC), was among the first batch of senior leaders from the State who joined the TMC in July last. She is expected to be part of the TMC’s State executive, the members of which the party is expected to declare soon.

The arrest amid the Trinamool’s untiring efforts to build an organisation in the State snowballed into a political controversy. The party of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee saw the development as “another ploy” to harm and harass the party’s rank and file.

Subal Bhowmik, who quit the Congress to join TMC, alleged they were “facing all round attacks in the State” and Panna Deb’s arrest was “deliberate and politically motivated”.

Leaders of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party refused to comment on the issue as it related to the law.

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