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Mainstream, Vol XLVIII, No 41, October 2, 2010

Tripura: Strange Happenings in Red Citadel

Wednesday 6 October 2010, by Basubrata Roy

Strange things are happening in Tripura, the red citadel of the North-East.

On August 28, a tribal widow, Baralakshmi Debbarma, of Anandanagar village in Sonamura Subdivision of Tripura, had a quarrel with the ex-CPI-M chairman, Shibcharan Debbarma’s sons, Manish and Uttam, over malpractices in the payment of NREGA money due; this infuriated Manish to beat up a pathetic Baralakshmi mercilessly, dragging her in a naked condition. Her younger daughter’s protest was met with the threats of identical treatment by the CPI-M cadres.

In a similar of incident on the same day at the nearby area of Bijoynagar, ADC Village, Farida Begum, Mujib Mia’s wife, was made naked and brutally assaulted by Sayed Mia and his son, Wasim Mia, over a neighbourly dispute on sharing of drinking water.

While the next day the State Women’s Commission chairperson, Tapati Chakraborty, along with various other citizens, strongly condemned the incidents as being barbaric, only earlier in the day, Kamalanagar, that falls in between the two fateful villages of Anandanagar and Bijoynagar, was the venue of a meeting of the divisional women’s wing of the ruling party where the Chief Minister strongly stressed the need for the empowerment of women in society. He was blissfully ignorant about what was happening at the same time with two unfortunate women on account of his own cadre raj at nearby areas.

The crime graph of the State is rapidly on the rise since the last decade and the Opposition, not being strong, hardly manages to highlight this issue.

Despite crime against women being on a steep rise, the police frames charges against the culprits only when different women’s organisations become vocal against this sort of barbarism. The charges, however, are framed on lighter issues; the culprits get bail easily to roam about freely without let or hindrance.

Ironically, the State has no Human Rights Commision and no human rights group has yet come forward even to demand it.

The employees, the backbone of the State’s economy, were denied justice to have a new Pay Commission by the almighty Red Gaurds, who didn’t even know that their partner running the government in West Bengal had set up a similar Commission for the employees in that State. In its place a Pay Review Committee was formed under a bureaucrat as a mockery of justice.

The citizens, not having anywhere to go for justice, are assembling under different political banners. The employees’ union of the ruling Left Front is in turmoil over the issue, while an all-powerful government that’s absolutely corrupt is, as usual, running the State with mere lip-service. And it has no headache as the Opposition is virtually non-existent.

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