Trinamool Congress MP Saugata Roy on Thursday said even a single crime against women in Bengal under a woman chief minister was shameful, giving ammunition to the Opposition which asked him to remind his own party about the humiliation.
Attending the inauguration of a police station in North 24 Pargana, Roy said: “Everyone is concerned about women’s safety. We have to show zero tolerance towards such crimes. In a state with a woman chief minister, even one incident is shameful for us. Strict action should be taken against culprits.”
The leader’s remarks come in the backdrop of a probe into the Hanskhali rape and murder incident in which a minor girl died after she was allegedly gang-raped at a birthday party earlier this month. The girl’s family claimed that the main accused is the son of a Trinamool Congress panchayat member, who was arrested for further investigation.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had drawn flak for her statement in which she appeared to have questioned the allegations of rape. “The police are yet to understand the cause of the death. I had asked them. Will you call it rape or was she pregnant? Was it (the fallout of) a love affair? Have you enquired about these? This is an unfortunate incident,” Banerjee had said.
Meanwhile, reacting to Roy’s statement, Samik Bhattacharya — BJP chief spokesperson — said: “Imagine, they are also saying this. He is a veteran, he realises that. If he feels this way, he has to say it to his party. Why did such an incident take place? He is himself saying it’s a shame.”
Adhir Ranjan Choudhury of the Congress said: “He is senior person and has said this to divert attention.”
Roy’s statement has also set off a flurry of questions within the TMC, with several leaders questioning the need to pinpoint the fact that a woman chief minister was at the helm of affairs.
Known to speak his heart, Roy was also effusive in his praise for political strategist Prashant Kishor even when TMC seniors were locked in a tussle with him.