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Updated April 4th, 2024 at 16:47 IST

'100% Responsible': Calcutta High Court Pulls Up TMC Over Sandeshkhali

What has happened in Sandeshkhali is extremely shameful, said Calcutta HC.

Reported by: Digital Desk
There Must Be Many Like Shahjahan In Bengal: Central Fact-Finding Team on Visit to Sandeshkhali
'100% Responsible': Calcutta High Court Pulls Up TMC Over Sandeshkhali | Image:ANI/File
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New Delhi: Calling the Sandeshkhali violence 'extremely shameful', the Calcutta High Court came down heavily on the ruling Trinamool Congress-led government in Bengal, and underlined that ensuring the safety of citizens falls entirely within their purview. 

"What has happened in Sandeshkhali is extremely shameful. The entire district administration and the ruling dispensation owe moral responsibility for what has happened in Sandeshkhali. 100% responsibility lies with the ruling party if the safety of a citizen is under threat; the government is responsible," a bench led by Chief Justice TS Sivagnanam said. 

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The court severely criticized the lawyer representing Sheikh Shahjahan.  "(55) days you were on the run... playing hide-and-seek. Then you took an obscure stance. (Just because) you close your eyes the world doesn't become dark," the Chief Justice said.

Shahjahan's lawyer responded: "I was told to be absconding (while) bail plea was pending."

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For the unversed, the Sandeshkhali region, located on the fringes of the Sunderbans, was engulfed in turmoil for over a month due to accusations against TMC leader Shajahan Sheikh and his cohorts of sexual abuse and land usurpation. Sheikh was arrested by the police after being on the run for 55 days.

The Sandeshkhali issue emerged as a primary target for the Trinamool's criticism. BJP has accused Banerjee of protecting Sheikh Shahjahan. In response, the Trinamool has retaliated by highlighting allegations against Brij Bhushan Singh, a current BJP Member of Parliament and former wrestling body chief, who has been accused of sexual assault by female wrestlers.  

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The BJP has also taken a strategic move by nominating Rekha Patra, one of the women who accused Sheikh Shahjahan of sexual assault, as a candidate for the Basirhat seat, which includes the Sandeshkhali area. 

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Published April 4th, 2024 at 14:56 IST

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