People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)


No. 26

July 01, 2012



Women Court Arrest in Kolkata


THOUSANDS of women, belonging to several organisations or to none, courted arrest in Kolkata on Tuesday, June 26, protesting against the increasing violence against women in West Bengal. The state, for the last one year, witnessed large scale atrocities against women both in villages and cities. As many as 517 women have suffered worst physical violence and molestation while 790 women had to face attack from Trinamul miscreants.


On the day, thousands of women marched through the streets to reach the Kolkata Police headquarters in Lal Bazaar. They were prevented from going ahead in Bepin Behari Ganguly Street where the police arrested 639 activists who were later released on bail. Thousands others were ready to court arrest. Those arrested included Shyamali Gupta, Rekha Goswami, Banani Biswas, Minati Ghosh, Sabitri Majumdar and Anju Kar.


The protestors said while the media reports highlighted some of the incidents, including the rape case in Park Street and the rape in a running local train in Katwa, the first woman chief minister of the state has denied every single incident and even termed these incidents as “fabricated.” The National Commission for Women  (NCW) took suo moto action and sent a, inquiry team who bitterly criticised the attitude of the administration. The NCW also observed that the rate of crime against women has sharply risen in Bengal and has gone up to twice the all-India rate. But the perpetration of such crimes goes on unabated.


It is to be noted that even on the day before the Left oriented women’s organisations organised this march through the Kolkata streets, a shivering incident of rape took place in Hemtabad in North Dinajpur district. (See the NPRD report alongside for the details.) While the victim was been hailed as the “pride of Bengal” and was projected as a role model for the state by the governor last year, the criminal auto-rickshaw driver is a TMC union leader. It was only after a whole night of agony that the victim could escape at dawn and was found wandering about in a state of shock before the villagers rescued her and lodged a complaint.


The June 26 protest action was organised by the AIDWA, Paschim Banga Mahila Samity, Nikhil Banga Mahila Sangha and Agragami Mahila Samity.