Voices for Bengal Victims - Demand Justice
Voices for Bengal Victims - Demand Justice
This petition is initiated by "Voices for Bengal Victims" - representing the Civil Society & Citizens of India including Doctors, Engineers, Social activists, Businessmen, Entrepreneurs, Artistes, Lawyers and litterateurs, are greatly disturbed and deeply anguished by the mindless violence as a fall out of electoral vengeance against the people in West Bengal who exercised their democratic rights to vote for one political party or the other.
We wish to appeal to you through this petition to take cognizance of the post-poll violence in West Bengal.
Political violence has been a part of West Bengal’s history but still the kind of gruesome violence that happened this year after the Election Results has shaken us up terribly even in Other States of India.
Law & Order is a state subject, but the state of West Bengal has failed to control law & order in the state. The role of the local police in several places too is suspicious and the victims themselves have been framed in false cases. It is sad that the entire Administration & Police seem to have become cohorts of the anti-social elements spreading meaningless violence.
We know that the Government of West Bengal has been elected democratically but what is happening on ground is highly undemocratic or rather anarchic. Especially the violence against women is simply outrageous and is a shame to humanity.
A fact finding team set up by a civil society initiative- Call for Justice, headed by former Chief Justice of the Sikkim High Court- Permod Kohli, and comprising of former Chief Secretary of Kerala- Ananda Bose, former DGP of Jharkhand- Nirmal Kaur, past president of ICSI- Nisar Ahmed and former additional Chief Secretary of Karnataka- M. Madan Gopal stated in its report that the simultaneous beginning of violence across villages and towns in West Bengal, hours after the poll verdict came in, were “not sporadic but premeditated, organised and conspiratorial.”
It is shocking to know that there were 15,000 incidents of post-poll violence in West Bengal in which 25 people were killed and 7,000 women were molested.
Some of the hardened criminals, mafia dons and criminal gangs who were already in police records led and carried the deadly attacks unhindered, which reveals that there is clear political patronage even before the elections and same being used to silence the political rivals.
The incidents of targeted destruction and vandalisation of properties- residential and
commercial, have the sole purpose to deprive people of their livelihood and choke them economically.
The worst-affected people are those who depend on day-to-day work or business who are pushed into financial degradation and unmitigated misery.
We personally came in contact with many victims, who gathered courage and went to the police but were turned away or asked to settle the matter with the culprits. Many people left their homes in villages for safer destinations, to shelter camps within and outside the state.
Elections were held in so many states but nowhere did we witness such violence. Women faced most of the attacks although the Chief Minister of the state is a woman.
We, the members of the civil society from all over India, make this humble appeal to our President the guardian of the nation, to immediately intervene to protect the lives and property of the victims and democratic values of our Society & direct the Central Government to take immediate cognizance of the ground situation in West Bengal & initiate tough action against the culprits. And if required, impose President’s Rule in the state of West Bengal.
Here, our concern is not just for Bengal. Every year, some part of the country goes to polls- crowd gather, rallies are conducted, inflammatory speeches are given, one part wins and others loose. But the goons of any winning party cannot be allowed to intimidate & brutalize the voters of opponent parties & perpetuate the electoral vengeance against the people for them to remain in fear forever to exercise their democratic rights next time.
If Bengal’s victims don’t get any justice, soon this can become a dangerous trend across the country. A trend for goons to do whatever they want.
And that will be a shame for the democracy of our beloved country.
We believe that our President will take an appropriate action in this regard.