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National Commission for Scheduled Castes visits violence-hit Sandeshkhali

First Published: 15th February, 2024 16:23 IST

Another panel member, Anju Bala demanded the implementation of presidential rule in Sandeshkhali to keep the people safe.

After listening to the grievances of women who have been protesting against the violence and sexual assault by the supporters of Trinamool Congress strongman Shajahan Sheikh, National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC) chairman Arun Haldar said that he will submit a report of the violence-hit Sandeshkhali area of West Bengal to President Droupadi Murmu on Friday at 11 am.

A delegation from the National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC) is in the violence-hit Sandeshkhali area of West Bengal‘s North 24 Parganas district to assess the situation and listen to the victims as women have been protesting against the violence and sexual assault by supporters of the ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC).

Arun Haldar said that members of the commission came here after receiving reports about Sandeshkhali and to listen to victims.

“I have received the report about Sandeshkhali. A lot of people wanted to say a lot of things but they were not given a chance. Members of the commission & I have come here to listen to them. I will listen to them & give the report to the government. It is a constitutional body, not a political body…Tomorrow at 11 am will send the report to the President,” Haldar said.

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Another panel member, Anju Bala demanded the implementation of presidential rule in Sandeshkhali to keep the people safe.

“CM Mamata Banerjee does not want to reveal anything, she does not register FIRs of torture against women. You torture them by calling them home. The country will not forgive you. The country will ask you to answer every single question. We want the president’s rule to be imposed in Sandeshkhali; otherwise, people can’t live here safely,” she said.

“It is a shameful incident that in today’s time as well something like this can happen to women…The state’s CM is a woman. ‘Naam Mamata rakhti hai lekin dil mein mamata naam ki chiz nahi hai’…,” Anju Bala said.

Meanwhile, the BJP continues to attack the Trinamool Congress (TMC) government in West Bengal over violence in Sandeshkhali, BJP MP Dilip Ghosh alleged on Thursday that Chief Mamata Banerjee was giving protection to its leaders like Shahjahan Sheikh from law enforcement agencies and also called them “criminals.”.

“Mamata Banerjee has kept criminals like Shajahan Sheikh, and Sibu hidden from the hands of the law. But people will not forgive her, she will either have to leave (her post) or people will make her do so,” said BJP MP Dilip Ghosh on Thursday while talking to the media.

Tension simmered in the Sandeshkhali area of North 24 Parganas district’s Basirhat subdivision on Tuesday during a protest by BJP workers led by state party president Sukanta Majumder against the alleged sexual harassment of women.
Women in Sandeshkhali have been agitating for the last few days over alleged atrocities committed against them by TMC leader Shajahan Sheikh and his aides. Majumdar sustained injuries during the police lathi-charge as a scuffle broke out between the police and party workers.
In connection with the violence, the BJP also formed a six-member committee of Union Ministers and MPs to visit Sandeshkhali in West Bengal‘s North Pargana district and collect information about the alleged incidents of sexual harassment and violence against women there.
Union Minister Annapurna Devi has been named as the convenor of the high-level committee. Other members of the panel are Pratima Bhowmik, BJP MPs Sunita Duggal, Kavita Patidar, Sangeeta Yadav, and Brijlal. They have been directed to visit the incident site, take stock of the situation, talk to the victims, and submit their report to BJP Party President JP Nadda.
JP Nadda, in the notification, said that the alleged incidents are “heart-wrenching.” He further said that the incidents of harassment of women and hooliganism are “happening continuously in West Bengal” while the administration there remains a “mute spectator.”
“Law and order has collapsed in the entire state,” he added.
Women, who have been protesting against Trinamool Congress strongman Shahjan Sheikh’s barbaric actions, alleged that the women who have been raped were asked for a medical report to prove that they has been sexually assaulted.
The protesters questioned, “how can cases that occurred six months or one year ago be proved by medical examination reports”.
“…We are being asked to show medical reports to prove rape… How can the women of the village come forward and say they have been raped? I have not been raped, but this has happened with other women…,” protester who was protesting over Sandeshkhali violence.
Women protesters claimed that their neighbours were picked up from their homes late at night and made to do odd jobs.”They used to make us work forcefully, both men and women, at 12 at night. They used to pick us up from our homes and made us work forcefully, even if someone is not well,” one of the women protesters said, speaking to ANI. Another protester said, “Will we get our respect & dignity back?…The State police will never take into custody Shahjahan, Shibu, Uttam, Ranju, Sanju and others…”(ANI)

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