West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was released from the hospital on Friday, with doctors saying she has responded well to treatment, two days after the Trinamool Congress leader was injured in the Nandigram assembly seat days before the state elections.
“The medical board felt she should be in the hospital for 48 hours more for observation. She requested that she should be discharged. Heeding to her request she is being discharged with medical advice,” doctors treating her at a hospital in Kolkata said in a statement.
“The Chief Minister has responded to treatment. The plaster cast was opened today and injury examined. The haematoma (blood suffusion) has diminished considerably. Ankle injury has shown much sign of improvement,” they added.
The Chief Minister has been asked to come back to hospital after a week for a check-up.
On Wednesday, after filing her election papers for Nandigram, she was at a market greeting people while standing on the footboard of her car when the crowd pressed against her door, which crushed her leg and hips, causing her injuries.
Whether the door was intentionally slammed or accidentally is now a hot button political debate.
After initially alleging an intentional attack by four-five unknown persons, in a subsequent video message from the hospital in Kolkata on Thursday, she said she was injured when a crowd surged around her car and pressed into her but did not repeat allegations of conspiracy.
“I appeal to everyone to be calm and maintain restraint, and to not do anything that will inconvenience people,” said the Chief Minister, who has signed up for one of her toughest election contests in Nandigram, where her BJP rival for the state polls is her former trusted aide Suvendu Adhikari.
“It is true that I was badly hurt. I was injured in my arm, leg. There were bone injuries… ligament injuries. I suffered chest pain… I was greeting people from the car bonnet and the crowd pressed into me, the entire pressure was on me. My leg was crushed. I was given medicines and taken to Kolkata,” she said.
The Trinamool Congress, however, wrote to the Election Commission alleging “a deep-rooted conspiracy to take the life” of its chief and linking it to the abrupt removal of the Bengal police chief a day before, for which it has blamed the BJP.
Calling it a “gruesome attack” on the Chief Minister, the party said an attempt was made on her life “within 24 hours of the removal of the Bengal police chief” by the Election Commission without the state government being consulted. The party alleged a “nexus” between the BJP’s complaints against the sacked police chief and the police being absent at the time of the incident.
Reacting sharply to the allegations which it said were “full of insinuations”, the Election Commission stated: “It looks undignified to even respond to the allegations of all this being done at the behest of a particular political party”.
The BJP, which has been accusing Ms Banerjee of feigning an attack to gain public sympathy in a losing battle, also urged the Election Commission to order a high-level investigation into Ms Banerjee’s allegations and to release video footage of the incident to establish what really happened.