Monday, September 30, 2013

Basanti apprehend violent communal clashes

Basanti in South 24 Paraganas district is seething with communal tensions and apprehension that violent altercations may take place between Hindus and Muslims is getting higher. To get the reality it is crucial to delve into a few pertinent facts. Sometime back, local Hindus wanted to construct a permanent structure to the Harisabha temple in Basanti market and had started to raise the requisite funds to cover the cost of construction. Even if lion’s share is being managed by Nemai Saha, president of Harisabha Temple Committee, there is the need of more. The Temple Committee, hence, decided to lease a portion of its property worth 2 bighas located few yards away from the temple. The Committee members also decided to lease a bank of the pond within the land and as per the Committee’s resolution, 12 shops of Hindus only would take place in the bank. The construction of 12 shops is going to end soon. On the opposite side of the pond, especially beside the PWD or Basanti to Bharatgarh main road, the pool of Bappa Dutta exists. While the temple uses the pool’s water to serve its religious purposes, territory behind it had been sold to Muslims where around 10 shops owned by Muslims exist. On 10th August, 2013, it was found that one of the shops had already been changed into butchery and only beef was being sold. This event caused great distress to the religious feeling of the Hindus in the area. However, to have an amiable solution, the secretary of Harisabha Temple Committee Mr. Narahari Das asked the Muslim shop-owner to address the sensitivity of the Hindus and relocate the business elsewhere. But he refused to do so. This was followed by the request of a group of committee’s members but there was no success at this time too. To prevent any communal disturbance, committee lodged an official complaint to the local police station of Basanti and also asked Kausar Ali, BDO, to stop it.  

Both BDO and O.C. of Basanti police station assured committee members that no such activity, potent enough to vitiate communal harmony in the locality, would be allowed. But all these noble assurances fell through as the business went on as usual. Being disillusioned at administration’s repeated failures and also feeling the pressing need to stop the butchery, Hindus started a signature campaign. A letter of protest with signatures was submitted to the District Magistrate while its copies were sent to other officials in the local administration. Hindus were gritty to have a legal triumph at this time and owing to their continual petitions, Surat Ali who is the owner of butchery, was detained by P.S. Basanti on the morning of 14th September. But within the next two hours Muslims went to the police station in crowds and forced police to release Surat Ali. While returning from the police station, Muslims created a victory march where highly provocative slogans like “Allahu Akbar”, “Nara-e-Takbir”, “Basanti bazare goru kate cholche cholbe (slaughtering of cows will go on in Basanti market)”, “Pakistan Zindabad”, “Hindustan Murdabad” were chanted. Apprehending danger, general meetings were organized on both 15th and 17th September that witnessed spontaneous participation of hundreds of Hindus. The meeting emphasized need of a strong Hindu unity and formed a local committee containing more than hundreds of Hindu members. Nevertheless, Hindus are being warned frequently by Muslim rogues to stop the temple project and allocating shops for Hindus behind the pool. One can get a hint of the outcome of these warnings by the events that followed on 18th September when a violent clash occurred between Samir Ali Sardar and Bholanath Debnath in Rupa Tailors located at Basanti market. Samir Ali Sardar asked Bholanath, worker in the garment shop, to show a few shirt pieces. No garment was selected and while returning those, derogatory words against Hindus were used by Samir Ali. Once Bholanath protested it led to a brawl. While Shyamal Saha and a few others joined Bholanath, Samir Ali Sardar was joined by his brothers and friends. Its intensity was such that police had to intervene ultimately. Although the clash ended for the moment, both groups were seen to warn each other of dire consequences. As per people in the area, this is a beginning only and will be followed by severe communal clashes right away. Hindus have formed “Hindu Jagaran Samiti” to ensure their own survival in Basanti.

Hindu Samhati regularly monitors and reports violations against Hindus in West Bengal. We also work with both governmental and NGO agencies for proper education on protection and ensure remedies to the Hindu populace as per prevailing law of the land.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Surge in cases of sexual abuse against women in Bengal as administration goes slow on attackers

Sexual abuse and assault of women has become a regular affair in the Indian state of West Bengal. While people’s anguishes against the government for not doing enough to protect women are rising steadily, the government prefers to retain a strange silence. The actions of the government as well as ground reports suggests that in a majority of cases, the attackers belong to Muslim community whereas the victims are Hindus, leading to deepening resentment among the victims who allege that government inaction is only to secure minority votes. One of many such victims is 16 year old Sujata Mal, daughter of Biswanath Mal, resident of Maheshpur village in Jangipara police station, Radhanagar panchayet under Hoogly district. Sujata was a bright student of Dwarhatta Rajeswari GirlsHigh School in Class IX. Both her parents were manual labourers and in spite of impoverished conditions, they struggled hard to provide her daughter with the best quality education they could afford. But what the family has got in return was her half-nude, slain body that was found on 15th September from beside a channel. The dead body had started to decompose and has been sent to Kolkata Medical College for a forensic examination. Irate villagers blocked the road for hours in protest. Belated appearance of police in the spot added fuel to fire and only after police assured villagers that criminals would be arrested soon, the roadblock was withdrawn. While investigations are still going on, the villagers opine that the case is a conspiracy hatched against unfortunate Sujata by someone from the neighboring village of Parbatipur. This village is inhabited by people from both Hindu and Muslim communities and is known for frequent inter-community clashes in the environs.

Madhabi Ghosh, resident in the village of Kaosate under the jurisdiction of police station of Baduria in the district of 24 Paraganas (North) committed suicide on 15th September after being molested by a few inhabitants of the same village including one Firoze Mandal, who goes by the pseudonym Genesh as per information from local sources. It has been reported that the entire plan was designed by Nurjahan Bibi, another resident of Kaosate, with an intention to size land and property of Madhabi who was managing the distillery business of her husband. It has been learnt that on 15th September a group of people who were later identified as Muslims rushed to her residence in the evening, forcefully brought her out and molested her in public. Madhabi committed suicide later on. However, no information of whether police is handling the case has been found yet as local Hindus find it too risky to fetch information from Kaosate.

The entire municipality of Baruipur in the district of 24 Paraganas (South) is aghast now following the molestation of a young girl in the crowded area of Bypass at the junction of Padmapukur and Qazipara on 17th September in the evening. It has been learnt while the girl was walking with three of her female friends she was molested by an unknown man. But there was no protest as the molester was too quick to be caught. Only when the girl rescued herself and informed her relatives, the reality was comprehended. According to locals, molester was not alone; he had been seen to talk to some other persons. But none of them could be seen following the attack.  The victim girl works in a nursing home in Baruipur and invited three friends on the occasion of Viswakarma Puja. An official complaint against two local miscreants Bubai Sheikh and Battu Gazi has been lodged by her to the local police station. None has been arrested yet.

Hindu Samhati regularly monitors and reports violations against Hindus in West Bengal. We also work with both governmental and NGO agencies for proper education on protection and ensure remedies to the Hindu populace as per prevailing law of the land.

Housewife gang-raped, murdered in Dhapdhapi

Bithi (name changed) is 23 year old wife of Purna Ghosh (name changed) and resident of Dhapdhapi village under Baruipur police station in 24 Parganas (South)) district. On 1st August she was raped and murdered by a gang of criminals while returning with her girl child Mrittika (name changed) to her residence at 8 pm. During the incident, three of the criminals encircled her all of a sudden and grabbed both mother and daughter in a flash. They were then taken to Dakshin (South) Barasat area where Bithi was raped while an assailant named Salauddin poured acid on her face. Later on, the same culprit Salauddin took Bithi to Baruipur Sub-divisional Hospital and phoned Tarak, brother of Bithi who lives in Dakshin (South) Durgapur and informed him of the development. Hearing the news Tarak along with other family members rushed to the hospital to find Bithi lying dead in a pool of blood. When questioned by police, Tarak confirmed that Salauddin was the main conspirator behind the event. According to Tarak, Salauddin used to regularly harass Bithi before her marriage and that he was cautioned by Tarak and his brothers to leave her alone. Based on complains by the victim’s family, Salauddin along with his accomplices Ramzan Mandal, Abdul Mandal and Nazir Mandal have been arrested by police. An FIR 86/13 dated 03.08.2013 under sections 302 and 342 IPC have been lodged against them.  According to police, Salauddin initially poured acid on Bitihi’s face to conceal her identity but later changed his mind and to prove his innocence, phoned Tarak. 

Hindu Samhati regularly monitors and reports violations against Hindus in West Bengal. We also work with both governmental and NGO agencies for proper education on protection and ensure remedies to the Hindu populace as per prevailing law of the land.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

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Hindu Samhati regularly monitors and reports violations against Hindus in West Bengal. We also work with both governmental and NGO agencies for proper education on protection and ensure remedies to the Hindu populace as per prevailing law of the land.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

School students in Kaliachak thrash headmaster for molesting parateacher

Bedrabad Baisnabnagar High School is located under the jurisdiction of Kaliachak police station in Malda district of West Bengal. On 9th September a group of students attacked its headmaster Mr Obaidur Rahman (age 50) for reportedly abusing and attempting to molest Ms Aparna Singha (age 35) who is also a teacher of the same school. The event started on 4thSeptember when Ms Singha was asked to visit the headmaster’s chamber. During the interaction, she alleged that Mr Rahman abused her verbally in sexually explicit languages and then attempted to molest her while she pleaded to be left alone. Although she could not leave initially, the headmaster relented eventually and allowed her to leave. After this, she rushed to the teacher’s room and informed her female colleagues of the torment. She was asked to remain silent for the time being. But her colleagues’ best efforts to suppress the incident failed and reports of Aparna’s attempted molestation spread across the neighborhood.  

Not only did this become the talk of the town, a lot of folks found the incident obnoxious and worthy of protest. Some were even found to describe the event as “enough is enough.” Following the event, the headmaster remained absent for the following three days while Aparna continued to go to school. Then on 9th September while the school started as usual, Obadiur Rahman asked Aparna Singha to visit his chamber again apparently to settle the crisis. However, during the interaction he grabbed one hand of Aprana and reportedly tried to molest her again. Somehow, she managed to save herself and ran to the teacher’s room. The latest set of assault enraged all and then a large number of students barged into the headmaster’s chamber to protest the harassment of Ms Singha. A heated argument ensued and once the headmaster refused to listen to them, students in throngs attacked him.    

Obadiur Rahman was manhandled, beaten heavily leading to a pandemonium and the school was then closed. Police officials and other responsible persons of local administration promptly visited the school. Ramkrishna Mandal, secretary of Baisnabnagar High School, also visited the spot and soon got engaged with police and administrative officials to find a solution and normalize things. Following the incident, the injured headmaster was sent to the local primary health centre and then referred to the district hospital for treatment.

Nevertheless, both Prasenjit Das, president of Trinamool Congress of Malda District, and Kalyan Mukherjee, Superintendent of Police – Malda, were found to be more interested to conceal offense of the school headmaster. While Prasenjit was found to reprimand students stating that they had a predetermined strategy to create lawlessness in the school and in its environs, SP was found to blame outsiders to create chaos.

Hindu Samhati regularly monitors and reports violations against Hindus in West Bengal. We also work with both governmental and NGO agencies for proper education on protection and ensure remedies to the Hindu populace as per prevailing law of the land.

Political jubilation panics villagers of Kanaidanga, Hooghly

The jubilant march of activists and supporters of Trinamool Congress on August 25, 2013 after successfully forming the Panchayat board at Bhagabatipur under the jurisdiction of Chanditala police station in Hoogly district turned into havoc for villagers living in Kanaidanga. The village comprises a sizable number of Hindu Barga Kshatriya families who belong to the scheduled castes and are known to be CPM supporters in the neighborhood. It has been learnt that initially there was no plan to enter the village of Kanaidanga. The decision was taken later on by Haji Rabiul Mollah (Kanu) who is enjoying high status of a strongman in TMC these days. The march was being led by Mohan Bag and Srikanta Bag while Haji was in the forefront.

Once the procession entered Kanaidanga, crackers were burst and it appeared as if the vitriolic participants were all set to carry on mayhem. Within a couple of minutes, the residence of Panchkari Bag was targeted and both his wife and niece were reportedly molested. Seeing further advancement of the march, local Hindus apprehended more dangers and stood up to resist it. But their resistance was foiled by local police who forced the Hindus to remain behind doors while the miscreants freely roamed in the area. It has been learnt that the Muslim rowdies were not from Kanaidanga but were brought from somewhere else and this development has panicked villagers.

Hindu Samhati regularly monitors and reports violations against Hindus in West Bengal. We also work with both governmental and NGO agencies for proper education on protection and ensure remedies to the Hindu populace as per prevailing law of the land.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Land grabbed forcefully to make local club in Kumargunj, Tamluk

Protesters thrashed mercilessly

Kumargunj under the jurisdiction of P.S. Tamluk, Block: Tamluk, District: Midnapur (East) experienced a brawl between two religious communities leading to a violent clash around 5 pm on September 9, 2013. It has come to knowledge, the problem started when a few Muslim youths asked a Hindu trader of Kumarganj market to either close down or relocate his shop to somewhere else to make their own club there. Dipankar Das, owner of the shop and also a supporter of Trinamool Congress, denied the offer flatly ensuing a heated argument. Dipankar was also joined by a few people soon and he decided not to give up. Finding it hard to deal with Dipankar, Muslim youths went back to their area only to return with more rowdies. While the fracas was in full swing, someone struck Dipakar with a rod. He fell on the ground and fled. But others supporting him then were not spared. They were beaten black and blue with all kinds of blunt instruments.

Four in the crowd supporting Dipankar got injured as a result. They include Gokul Adak (age 50), Surya Maity (age 45), Rabin Maity (age 45), Prashanta Maity (age 45). The inhuman thrashing raised an alarm in the locality and finding more people advancing to save aforesaid people, culprits fled. Injured persons were shifted to local primary health center and then to the city hospital. Enraged Hindus blocked the road for a few minutes as a mark of protest but it ended soon due to police interference. RAF has also been deployed to maintain law and order in the area but no efforts to arrest the miscreants led by Rohul Amin Gain, Abdul Hamid Gain, Sheikh Farid Ali and Julfikar Ali (all workers of Trinamool Congress) into custody have been witnessed. These are four dreaded rowdies and also identified as accomplices in the crime. But police and administration is more interested to admonish local Hindus.

As per fresh reports, police refused to accept any letter of complaint from Hindus and the shop of Dipankar has been seized forcefully by now.  Many incidents in recent times demonstrate that the Hindus cannot expect any justice or equal treatment in East Medinipur district under present TMC regime as it was in the past Left Front period. 

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Villages in Sandeshkhali PS under communal attack; united resistance by victims prompts police action

In the morning of 31st August, a mob consisting of Muslim miscreants attacked and destroyed several shops and severely beaten the shop owners in Sarberia area of Sandeshkhali police station in North 24 Parganas district. Mr Bhombol Pramanik and his son Bapi Pramanik from Charabidya village were severely injured in these attacks. When police failed to control the situation, RAF has been deployed. But RAF too were attacked by the Muslims. 4 RAF personnel were injured and one police vehicle was fully damaged. Over a thousand strong mob roamed the adjoining areas of Sarberia, Rajbari and Agarati while communally provocative announcements blared loudly from the loudspeaker’s Rajbari Purbapara mosque. 

Those on the receiving end of the attack felt terrorized in a manner reminiscent of attacks in Deganga where properties belonging to the Hindus were attacked and looted by Muslims from neighbouring villages while the police looked on helplessly. In recent times, local criminals previously owing allegiance to the CPI(M) have promptly switched sides after the TMC came to power and have continued to receive political patronage. Consequently, their criminal activities have continued unabated with the police unable to stop, arrest or even restrain the criminals, which include leading gangsters of the area like Shahjahan Sheikh, Shahjahan Gazi and others.

During this recent attack, the victims had limited options, either to engage in a bloody fight with the criminal gang or migrate away from their hearth as many have done over the decades across Bengal. On the following night, the pillaging continued and the shops of Kamal Bisoyee and Milan Bisoyee were attacked resulting in a loss of goods worth 7 lakhs. Following these, the local Hindu community seemed to have mustered courage to register a protest. They were shocked to find that the SDPO of Basirhat police station, Mr Abhijit Banerjee, instead of controlling the situation, tried to break the evolving resistance by threatening to arrest Mr Narayan Paik on the pretext of narcotics (marijuana) cases to be slapped against him. The following day on 1st September, suffering Hindus decided to thwart further attacks upon them by organizing a resistance. In Janapara village, local youths kept tight vigil and chased away a mob of miscreants while in another village it was Rapid Action Force (RAF) that thwarted the advances of the rampaging mob. In the late night, the Circle Inspector of police came to the village of Nalkara and assured the local Hindu youths that stern action to be taken by the police as and when necessary and requested them not to be provoked by rumours. 

It appears that the development of resistance amongst the Hindus for appropriate retaliatory and defensive measures in case of further attacks prompted the police to take note of situation. Eventually the police arrested a total of 18 persons, nine from each community. TMC leaders Mr. Ranjit Das indirectly and TMC Panchayat Samity (Sandeshkhali Bl.-1) Sabhapati Smt. Aparna Halder openly pressurizing the police to arrest Mr Narayan Paik and other leaders who resisted the attack.