1. Home
  2. English
  3. Mamata to Modi: “Don’t Shed Crocodile’s Tears for Sandeshkhali Women”
Mamata to Modi: “Don’t Shed Crocodile’s Tears for Sandeshkhali Women”

Mamata to Modi: “Don’t Shed Crocodile’s Tears for Sandeshkhali Women”

Social Share

Manas Dasgupta

NEW DELHI, May 5: As the West Bengal governor CV Ananda Bose wrote to the Raj-Bhavan staff members to ignore all communications from the state police regarding the sexual harassment charge levelled against him, the chief minister Mamata Banerjee citing a purported sting operation asked the Prime Minister Narendra Modi to “stop shedding crocodiles tears” for the allegedly sexually assaulted women of Sandeshkhali.

Alleging that the “mistruth” about Sandeshkhali was spread by the BJP using money, Ms Banerjee said West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Sunday said the “conspiracy hatched by the saffron party” has come to the fore with the unravelling of a recent sting.

Addressing an election rally in Bolpur Lok Sabha seat in support of TMC candidate and sitting MP Satabdi Roy, Banerjee said, “Blatant lies were invented by the BJP, which plotted a conspiracy by giving money to some people to tell lies.” “Did anyone ever imagine that BJP would stoop so low that it would spread canards on Sandeshkhali? Don’t dishonour the mothers of West Bengal by levelling such heinous allegations. Don’t dare try to disrespect women of the state by offering them money to level false allegations against our party,” Banerjee said.

The TMC on Saturday released a video on social media, in which a man, who claimed to be a BJP mandal president in Sandeshkhali, was heard saying that Leader of the Opposition in the West Bengal Assembly, Suvendu Adhikari, was behind the “whole conspiracy.” In the purported video, the man was heard saying that Adhikari had asked him and other BJP leaders of the area to “instigate three-four local women to level allegations of rape against three TMC leaders, including Shajahan Sheikh.”

Accusing Mr Modi of taking the words of “few people” in his party on face value, she asked the Prime Minister to stop shedding crocodile’s tears in sympathy of the alleged sexually assaulted women of Sandeshkhali and said “by seeing the reaction of BJP leaders to the video, it was apparent that they were scared.”

“However, if some people, including those from the TMC, committed any wrong, the party and the state government have always been quick to take disciplinary action against them, no matter how powerful they are,” she asserted. Sandeshkhali in North 24 Parganas district had erupted in protests after women accused now-suspended TMC leader Shajahan Sheikh and his associates of sexual abuse and land grabbing. He has been arrested and is now in CBI custody.

West Bengal BJP chief and Lok Sabha candidate from Balurghat, Sukanta Majumdar, however, had claimed on Saturday that the alleged Sandeshkhali sting video was “propaganda” and claimed it was being used by Ms Banerjee to “hide and suppress the sin committed in Sandeshkhali.”

“To hide and suppress the sin committed in Sandeshkhali, Mamata Banerjee is doing all this. A video has surfaced but will you trust the video or the women who are speaking about it through affidavit. Mamata Banerjee should have gone and talked to the women of Sandeshkhali…This is just propaganda to suppress it,” he said.

On Saturday, a video of a sting operation surfaced that has stirred up controversy in Sandeshkhali which was broadcast by a local television channel. In the alleged video, a person, purportedly a BJP Mandal (booth) president named Gangadhar Koyal is heard saying that Sandeshkhali women, who weren’t sexually assaulted, were projected as ‘rape’ victims at the behest of the LoP.

Claiming that Mr Suvendu ‘helped’ him get this done, the person in the video said the former told him that the TMC’s strongmen in the area wouldn’t be arrested unless he is falsely implicated in a “rape case.” However, the news channel that broke the alleged sting operation did not check the veracity of the clip.

Meanwhile, Mr Ananda Bose, who is away in his home state Kerala, on Sunday wrote to the Raj-Bhavan staff asking them to disregard any communication from the Kolkata police about the about the sexual harassment allegation against him pointing out that no criminal proceedings could be instituted against a Governor during their term of office.

The directive, shared on the official handle of Raj Bhavan, explicitly prohibits staff members, whether permanent or temporary, from making any statements online, offline, in person, over the phone, or through any other means regarding the ongoing investigation.

The move came a day after the Kolkata Police formed a special enquiry team (SET) to investigate the sexual harassment allegations levelled against Bose by a contractual woman employee at the Raj Bhavan. Sources in the Kolkata Police said that the special team led by Deputy Commissioner (Central) Indira Mukherjee has started making inquiries into the incident. The special team comprises eight senior police officers.

The woman employee had on Friday lodged a written complaint with the Kolkata Police alleging molestation by the governor in the Raj Bhavan. The Governor had then described the allegations as “absurd drama” and had said none would be able to deter him from his “determined efforts to expose corruption and curb violence.”

In the Sunday letter to the Raj Bhavan staff, Governor Bose said, “The reports from the media indicate that the police propose to conduct an inquiry into the incident and that they would be examining the staff of the Raj Bhavan. It is also reported that the investigating team intends to collect the CCTV footage from Raj Bhavan. The question that arises is as to whether the police can conduct an inquiry and collect evidence in view of the immunity enjoyed by the Governor under Art.361(2) and (3) of the Constitution of India.”

According to Article 361 (2) of the Constitution, no criminal proceedings can be instituted or continued against the President, or the Governor of a state, in any court during their term of office. Bose further wrote, “Since the Governor has been granted constitutional immunity from any criminal proceedings being instituted or continued against him, it logically follows that the police cannot investigate/inquire into the matter in any manner whatsoever. To say that the inquiry/investigation of the police could continue even during the tenure of the Governor though no court can take cognisance of the final report, would be in derogation of the objective and essence of Art.361 of the Constitution of India.

“Thus, in view of the immunity enjoyed by the Governor, the police are constitutionally barred from carrying out any kind of preliminary inquiry, registering a FIR.”

“In the circumstances, all staff/ employees including part-time, temporary, DRW (Daily Rated Workers) or those engaged in Raj Bhavan in any manner are hereby directed to ignore any communication from the police in this respect and refrain from giving any statement online, offline, in person, over phone or in any other manner…” wrote Governor Bose.

Three Raj Bhavan officials and a Kolkata Police personnel posted at the Governor House were summoned in connection to the molestation case by officers of Hare Street Police Station on Saturday. “None of the Raj Bhavan officials turned up for inquiry, and only the policeman attended. We will request them to come to the Hare Street Police Station again on Monday,” a police officer had said on Saturday.



Your email address will not be published.

Join our WhatsApp Channel

And stay informed with the latest news and updates.

Join Now
revoi whats app qr code