A middle-aged mother of two was asked to squat more than 100 times holding her ears in a village in Midnapore, West Bengal, for opposing booth capturing by activists of the Trinamool Congress during the recent panchayat election. This is hocking that how a kangaroo court allegedly organised by Trinamul in West Midnapore had a party gram panchayat member’s wife paraded with a garland of shoes and squat repeatedly holding her ears for allegedly having backed the victorious BJP candidate.
Kabita Das fainted after being subjected to the humiliation on Friday in Bagdubi at the court allegedly convened by Ashis Patra, the Trinamul booth president, and around 25 others.
According to the report, the incident came to light after a photograph of the woman went viral on social media on Saturday(19 May). Media in-charge of Vishwa Hindu Parishad Sourish Mukherjee tweeted the picture, saying she was punished for not voting for the Mamata Banerjee-led TMC in the Panchayat polls.
Sourish Mukherjee, media-in-charge of Vishwa Hindu Parishad, tweeted the picture, alleging that the woman was made to squat as a punishment for not voting for TMC in the rural polls. “A housewife was forced to walk around the village wearing a garland of shoes. She was also forced to squat holding her ears in front of the TMC office. Her crime, she dared to vote against TMC,” he tweeted.
In Medinipur Sadar, No 4 Kanshabati area, Bagdubi village: A housewife was forced to walk around the village wearing a garland of shoes. She was also forced to squat holding her ears in front of the TMC office.
Her crime, she dared to vote against TMC…#SaveBengalpic.twitter.com/YVSAShdZiJ
— Sourish Mukherjee (@me_sourish) May 19, 2018
The woman said her actions were mistaken and “hence I was ridiculed in such a manner”
She had protested against booth capturing in her Bagdubi village by Trinamool activists on the polling day and had asked them to fight elections democratically. However, she said “it made them think that I was supporting the independent candidate”.
The independent candidate, Sikha Paria went on to win a seat in the panchayat, which also saw Trinamool getting 11 seats and BJP 4.
Angry Trinamool activists allegedly called her to the party office in the village and “punished” her by abusing her and making her wear a garland of shoes and walk around the village. They also assaulted her and forced her to do sit-ups holding her ears, she told media persons.
The woman said her actions were mistaken and “hence I was ridiculed in such a manner”.
Her husband said they were supporters of Trinamool Congress, but were “apprehensive of continuing with the party” after this incident.
“Because of this baseless allegation, my wife was made to walk through the entire village in full view of around 1,500 people, wearing a garland of shoes before being made to squat holding her ears in front of the Trinamul office,” Kabita’s husband Gopal Das said on Saturday.
West Midnapore TMC president Ajit Maity said though the picture isn’t fake, it has got nothing to do with the polls.
“No TMC worker is involved. It was no way connected to panchayat poll. The couple had some issues with locals and there is rivalry between two groups. This could be a fallout of that rivalry. We are trying to find out who are involved. TMC never promotes such actions,” he said.
BJP and Congress said the Trinamool activists had crossed all limits.
“During nomination, the state had seen that the women were not spared by the Trinamool Congress activists and in many places the women were beaten up. But what had happened at Bagdudi had crossed all limits. The administration should take strong steps against those who had humiliated her,” Arup Das, a BJP leader in Midnapore said.
“It is a matter of great shame. Trinamool Congress did not even think before insulting a woman in such a way,” said Anil Sikaria, a district Congress leader.
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