15-year-old's gangrape, murder in West Bengal's Sonarpur trigger political unrest
An alleged rape and murder of a 15-year-old girl in West Bengal's Sonarpur in Chopra assembly constituency has triggered furor among locals and political leaders in the state. Following the incident, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders accused the Trinamool Congress (TMC) of creating an "environment of terror" in the state.
A 15-year-girl, who had recently cleared the West Bengal Madhyamik exams, was allegedly raped and killed in the Sonarpur area of Dinajpur district. The girl was first abducted and then taken to another place where she was raped and then left to die. Her dead body was found near a banyan tree in Sonarpur area.
Her family alleged that the girl was gang-raped and murdered.
The victim's elder sister said, "My sister went missing since night. After looking for her the entire night, we finally found her body near a banyan tree in the morning. There was poison in her mouth. She was raped. We are suspecting that five Muslim men, who were looking for her yesterday, had murdered her."
After the body of the minor was found, locals blocked National Highway 31 demanding justice for the victim. They said that they will continue to protest until perpetrators are caught and punished.
Daspara gram Sabha Samiti member Asim Burman said, "Police have recovered two cycles, Adhar card, two umbrellas and a cell phone from the spot. The girl's body was found. I think this will help police to find the culprits. We will continue our strike till the criminals are held and punished."
Amid the protest, police fired tear gas to disperse the crowd that vandalised buses and set vehicles on fire.
BJP leader Surajit Sen claimed that TMC goons have created an environment of terror in the area.
"It is clear how TMC miscreants are creating fear and indulging in such activities in the area. We demand the arrest of the accused and the criminal to be hanged to death," Surajit Sen said.
BJP MP Raju Bista said, "In the past few years, Chopra has seen an exponential rise in illegal infiltration and crime as well. The region once peaceful, has today become a hotbed of crime and criminals who receive political patronage from the party in power."
"Crimes, especially against women, have risen sharply, yet the West Bengal government has turned a blind eye to it. Despite having a woman as the chief minister, West Bengal ranks among the states with the highest number of crimes against women," Raju Bista said
Raju Bista further alleged: "This is because the TMC has time and again subverted law and order to suit their political purpose. Instead of the rule of law, the rule of TMC is allowed to run its writ in West Bengal. The Constitution is sidelined and criminals are given protection and political shelter by the party in power."
West Bengal Tourism Minister and TMC leader Gautam Deb said, "Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has instructed action in the case. The government will arrest and punish those involved in this. A TMC delegation will visit Chopra area and meet the family on Monday."
The situation in the area is worsening with the involvement of religious groups in the fight for justice for the victim's family.