Surge in cases of sexual abuse against women in Bengal as administration goes slow on attackers

Sexual abuse and assault of women has become a regular affair in the Indian state of West Bengal. While people’s anguishes against the government for not doing enough to protect women are rising steadily, the government prefers to retain a strange silence. The actions of the government as well as ground reports suggests that in a majority of cases, the attackers belong to Muslim community whereas the victims are Hindus, leading to deepening resentment among the victims who allege that government inaction is only to secure minority votes. One of many such victims is 16 year old Sujata Mal, daughter of Biswanath Mal, resident of Maheshpur village in Jangipara police station, Radhanagar panchayet under Hoogly district. Sujata was a bright student of Dwarhatta Rajeswari Girls‘ High School in Class IX. Both her parents were manual labourers and in spite of impoverished conditions, they struggled hard to provide her daughter with the best quality education they could afford. But what the family has got in return was her half-nude, slain body that was found on 15th September from beside a channel. The dead body had started to decompose and has been sent to Kolkata Medical College for a forensic examination. Irate villagers blocked the road for hours in protest. Belated appearance of police in the spot added fuel to fire and only after police assured villagers that criminals would be arrested soon, the roadblock was withdrawn. While investigations are still going on, the villagers opine that the case is a conspiracy hatched against unfortunate Sujata by someone from the neighboring village of Parbatipur. This village is inhabited by people from both Hindu and Muslim communities and is known for frequent inter-community clashes in the environs.
Madhabi Ghosh, resident in the village of Kaosate under the jurisdiction of police station of Baduria in the district of 24 Paraganas (North) committed suicide on 15th September after being molested by a few inhabitants of the same village including one Firoze Mandal, who goes by the pseudonym Genesh as per information from local sources. It has been reported that the entire plan was designed by Nurjahan Bibi, another resident of Kaosate, with an intention to size land and property of Madhabi who was managing the distillery business of her husband. It has been learnt that on 15th September a group of people who were later identified as Muslims rushed to her residence in the evening, forcefully brought her out and molested her in public. Madhabi committed suicide later on. However, no information of whether police is handling the case has been found yet as local Hindus find it too risky to fetch information from Kaosate.
The entire municipality of Baruipur in the district of 24 Paraganas (South) is aghast now following the molestation of a young girl in the crowded area of Bypass at the junction of Padmapukur and Qazipara on 17th September in the evening. It has been learnt while the girl was walking with three of her female friends she was molested by an unknown man. But there was no protest as the molester was too quick to be caught. Only when the girl rescued herself and informed her relatives, the reality was comprehended. According to locals, molester was not alone; he had been seen to talk to some other persons. But none of them could be seen following the attack.  The victim girl works in a nursing home in Baruipur and invited three friends on the occasion of Viswakarma Puja. An official complaint against two local miscreants Bubai Sheikh and Battu Gazi has been lodged by her to the local police station. None has been arrested yet.