Academicians Lead Charge Against Trinamool For Post-Poll Violence, Write To President And Supreme Court For Probes

Academicians Lead Charge Against Trinamool For Post-Poll Violence, Write To President And Supreme Court For ProbesWest Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.
Snapshot
  • Academicians write to the Supreme Court and the President to probe the post-poll violence in Bengal. They also sought their intervention to end violence against SC and ST communities in the state.

Close on the heels of over 600 senior academicians appealing to the Supreme Court to set up a special investigation team (SIT) to probe the post-poll violence in Bengal in which scores of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) functionaries and supporters have lost their lives and thousands displaced, over a hundred academicians belonging to the Dalit, OBC, tribal and backward class communities have sought the President's intervention to end violence against SC and ST communities in the state.

The Centre for Social Development and over a hundred academicians wrote to President Ram Nath Kovind on Thursday, drawing his plight to the horrific atrocities against members of the SC, ST and OBC communities in Bengal as a result of violence unleashed on them by Trinamool Congress supporters.

In a memorandum to the President, the academicians said that “state-sponsored activists of the Trinamool Congress in collaboration with the state police have targeted the SC/ST community” and have killed, raped members of the SC/ST communities, looted their homes, and forcibly occupied their lands.

“More than 11,000 people, most of them belonging to the SC and ST communities, have been rendered homeless and over 40,000 affected in 1627 cases of brutal attacks on them,” they wrote in the memorandum.

It also states that over 5000 houses have been demolished after the declaration of results of the Assembly elections, 26 people belonging to the SC/ST communities have been killed, and 142 women belonging to these communities have been raped.

Houses and shops belonging to the members of the SC/ST communities have been looted, ransacked and torched, and they have been warned against returning to their homes. As a result, the memorandum said, over 2,000 SC/ST people have become internally displaced and have been forced to take shelter in the neighbouring states of Assam, Jharkhand and Odisha.

The academicians, drawn from various colleges and universities all over the country, urged the President to intervene and end the atrocities on members of the SC and ST communities in Bengal.

Earlier this week, over 600 senior academicians, including vice-chancellors of various universities, appealed to the Supreme Court to take suo moto cognisance of post-poll violence in Bengal and set up an SIT to probe all such incidents.

The academicians noted that all those who did not vote for the Trinamool in the recent Assembly elections were being targeted, and thousands have migrated to neighbouring states due to fear of being attacked or killed by “hooligans supported by the ruling party of Bengal”.

The academicians noted that “such acts of violence and politics of terror undermine the Constitution and destroy the basic building blocks of democracy” and should not be tolerated.

In end-May, over 2,000 women lawyers from across the country wrote to the Chief Justice of India urging him to take cognisance of post-poll violence in Bengal and set up an SIT to probe all the incidents.

Stating that Bengal was facing a “Constitutional crisis” due to blatant subversion of democratic norms, the lawyers wrote that “the incidents of violence have shackled the conscience of thousands of women lawyers” in the country.

“The police are hand in glove with the goons and the victims are not in a position to even register their complaints. There is a complete breakdown of the constitutional machinery in the state,” the lawyers wrote to the CJI.

The lawyers’ letter to the CJI coincided with a memorandum submitted by over 150 former judges, bureaucrats, diplomats, police officers and eminent persons to President Kovind urging him to intervene to end post-poll violence in Bengal.

In a memorandum to the President, they stated: “We are greatly disturbed by the mindless instigation of reported violence in electoral vengeance against the people who exercised their democratic right to vote for one political party or the other”.

“Media reports, largely substantiated by eyewitness accounts, mention murders, rapes, attacks on persons and property, including by anti-national elements, leading to forced migration of people to shelter homes”.

“These unfortunate developments, if unchecked, could establish a trend which will undermine and ultimately destroy the deep rooted democratic traditions of India,” they said in the memorandum.

Former Delhi High Court Chief Justice B C Patel, former Bombay High Court Chief Justice Kshitij Vyas, former RAW chief Sanjeev Tripathi, former Punjab DGP P C Dogra and former Jammu and Kashmir DGP S P Vaid are among the signatories to the memorandum.

The Trinamool Congress has denied all allegations of post-poll violence.

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