Roy said he was aghast over the spate of “defamatory attacks” against every TMC leader after the arrests of senior party functionaries Partha Chatterjee and Anubrata Mondal by central agencies in different cases.
He later said that the shoe comment is a rhetoric and not to be taken literally. Addressing a street corner meeting here, he said, “If there is any BJP or CPI(M) activist here, listen carefully. If any of you cross the limits of decency by branding every one of the TMC as thieves while attacking the party, don’t blame us if our party men beat you up with shoes.” “Don’t complain if you are driven out of your locality by our members,” he added.
Reacting to Roy’s remarks, BJP state president Sukanta Majumdar said the comments of the retired professor show how verbal abuses have become the trend in the TMC. Shedding his mask of civility, Saugata Roy adopted the language of the lumpen. Very soon the people of Bengal will turn against the corrupt TMC in public and leaders like Roy will face the music,” Majumdar said. CPI(M) Central Committee member Sujan Chakraborty claimed that Roy is trying to raise his ratings in the TMC hierarchy by making such comments.
“If he wants to threaten us, let me tell him that our cadre is ready to face the TMC’s rowdyism on road,” he said. Trinamool Congress state spokesperson Kunal Ghosh sought to defend his party colleague, saying that attacks by the entire opposition against every TMC leader after the arrest of Chatterjee and Mondal probably made a veteran MP like Roy utter such comments.
Later, Roy told PTI that the shoe comment was “a rhetoric used by the Naxalites in the early 1070s. It should not be taken literally.” Roy’s comment came a few days after he remarked that shoes will be made by peeling off the skin of those who believe they can get away by maligning the TMC under the garb of protest.
However, he later regretted making such a remark.