Recurrent communal clashes shudder Kakdwip, South 24 Paraganas

Police apprehends more sinister outcome

Communal clashes in succession have shivered Kakdwip in the district of South 24 Paraganas lock, stock and barrel and if worst apprehensions of administration get true, the area is going to be the hotbed of mounting Hindu-Muslim clashes harrying the whole of Bengal already.  The trouble started on April 14, 2014 at the Kacharibari Shivmandir premises within the Kakdwip police station’s jurisdiction at 10 pm when Hindus in the area following the Charak Puja organized a dance competition. The contest earned attraction of Hindu girls and women and they, as expected, lost no time to take part in it. All of a sudden, a group of Muslim youths was found to hurl sexually explicit remarks at them. Even if they were ignored initially, one Muslim youth stepped forward and tore off a child dancer’s blouse that led to a ruckus. Members of the Shiva Puja Committee asked the Muslim youths to go away immediately.  The Muslim youths retreated and tension died down.

Albeit Hindus in the area hoped that the problem ended with it, later developments proved otherwise. The next center of activity was the village of Badakhali adjacent to the Kacharibari village. On April 15, at 9.30 pm, at the premises of Badakhali Shivmandir, a social gathering to observe Charak Puja took place and even a notable orchestra was also invited. While the celebration was in full swing, a group of Muslim youths, no less than 15 in numbers, turned up there. Soon, they were found to drink hard liquor and taunt Hindu women. At this time too Hindus informed the organizing committee there and hence, Muslim youths were asked to leave the place to avert any untoward incident. But at this time, Muslim youths, instead of moving out threatened Hindus. They also hurled a few bottles to them irately. This unruly behavior led to a violent clash between the two groups and Islamists, after being beaten hollow, had to retreat.

Within a few minutes, Islamists from other areas were phoned and soon an outfit comprising dreaded criminals like Murshed Ali, Sheikh Juli, Sheikh Gunda and others were formed to avenge the insult. It was 11.30 pm when the outfit appeared at the fringe of Badakhali and once Islamists turned up, they got hold of Swapan Kori (age 48). Swapan inhabits the same village and is also a local leader of the Trinamool Congress. He was returning from the market in close proximity, then but terming him as the mastermind behind the insult of Islamists, the group chased him. Soon Swapan was grabbed, forced to get nude and was also pushed into a pond. The sole intention of the group was to murder Swapan brutally so as to avenge the insult and teach Hindus a lesson. But Swapan was lucky enough to hoodwink them and run away. Islamists went after him yet again. Once Swapan reached near the Badakhali Shivmandir, he raised an alarm. Witnessing his cry of pain, condition and also the Islamists behind him, the celebration was stopped and Hindus were asked to rise to the assailants. The virulent mob pounced down on the entire team, got hold of 4 Islamists and thrashed them mercilessly.

Later on, police was telephoned who ultimately rescued the four heavily injured youths and also took them into custody. A meeting was organized on the next day, under the sway of local administration, to restore communal harmony. Both Muslims and Hindus including Swapan Kori attended the meeting. After hours of discussions, all arrested Muslim youths were released. But the situation is yet to normalize; tension and mutual distrust reign the area still.

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.


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