Post Poll Violence in West Bengal: Shame to Democracy

In a democratic society some people will vote for the party which is in power and some will vote for opposition parties. This is a simple rule in democracy. But what has been happening in West Bengal after 2 May 2021 is highly deplorable, sad and heart wrenching as a State with all “Bhadraloks” have proved that many of them can go at any level of violence i.e. killing, arson, assault etc. irrespective of any political party.  It is pertinent to mention that same time along with few other states elections were held in Assam. But not a single violence took place in Assam, a neighbouring State so “Bhadraloks” of West Bengal should learn. Few years ago I visited across West Bengal for academic woks and I observed huge unemployment. Many educated youths were literally crying as there were no employment opportunities. Many told​ me ​ educated​ ​​youths  were working as security personnel by getting paltry amounts.  Also it is interesting to mention here that many were proud of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore, ​ Sri Aurobindo, Kazi Nazrul Islam, Swami Vivekananda, Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, and many others as they were from Bengal. I highly praise this theory ‘but one should also do his or her good activities’. Anyway, West Bengal was once an economically prosperous state  ​now stands at low level in terms of development. During the 1960s many people used to go to West Bengal in general and Kolkata/Calcutta in particular for work. Against this backdrop, Labour Migration from the State in recent years is high as job opportunities are less. ​A​ccording to the Census 2011​, West Bengal ranks fourth among the states from where people migrate for work and employment. “Between 2001 and 2011, nearly 5.8 lakh people migrated from​ West​ Bengal looking for work, which is only after Uttar Pradesh (37.3 lakh), Bihar (22.6 lakh) and Rajasthan (6.6 lakh)” (The Times of India, 3/11/2019).  

​  ​A few data about post poll violence may be presented here.  According to the Times of India dated May 4, 2021 “11 killed in Bengal post-poll violence”. This is highly deplorable in a so-called   “Bhadralok” State. Killing of any person irrespective of party supporter, religion, caste language etc never can be supported, rather very very deplorable.  By quoting India Today dated 5/5/2021, it may be mentioned that “as post-poll violence grips West Bengal following the announcement of the assembly poll results, hundreds of BJP karyakartas and family members reportedly fled the state and have now taken shelter in Assam by crossing the inter-state border. Senior minister in the Assam government, Himanta Biswa Sarma on Tuesday claimed that around 300-400 BJP karyakartas and family members have crossed over to Dhubri in Assam after post-poll violence in West Bengal. The Assam minister further added that the state government is providing food and shelter to the party workers who have fled West Bengal”.

My fervent request to Didi as you are CM kindly saves the lives and properties of all. Because in school days read, “Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent”

Dr Shankar Chatterjee, Hyderabad, Dt 5 May 2021

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