Tuesday July 16, 2019
Home India 3 arrested fo...

3 arrested for lynching student in Bengal

0
//

Kolkata: Three people have been arrested for beating a student to death inside a college in West Bengal’s West Midnapore district, police said on Saturday. However, the district police chief said none of the three were seen with any weapon in the CCTV footage.

Photo credit: indiatvnews.com
Photo credit: indiatvnews.com

The incident took place at Sabang Sajanikanta Mahavidyalaya in West Midnapore on Friday when Krishna Prasad Jana, a BA student, was beaten to death during a clash between two groups of students.

“Six people were named in the complaint and last night (Friday), we arrested three of them. We are looking for the rest three,” a police officer said.

While the officer refused to comment on their political affiliation, he said the arrested trio were former students of the college.

But Superintendent of Police Bharati Ghosh said the CCTV footage from the union room showed none of those arrested or against whom complaints were lodged carrying ‘lathis’ (bamboo staffs).

“None of the six whose names figure in the FIR were seen wielding lathis. There is no such video footage featuring the three arrested also,” she said.

Ghosh said the footage did not show two groups of students clashing. “There was only one group of student wielding the lathis and beating up others,” she said.

The incident has taken a political colour with the opposition Congress accusing the Trinamool Congress students’ wing of orchestrating the attack while Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee as well as Education Minister Partha Chatterjee attributed the death to internal feud among the Congress affiliated Chhatra Parishad activists.

An eye witness and complainant in the case, Somen Ganguly, claimed Jana was killed for his refusal to felicitate state minister Soumen Kumar Mahapatra.

“When Jana refused to go and join the felicitation of the minister, a group of 30-40 students attacked him with sticks and rods. We want those who killed him be given exemplary punishment,” said Ganguly.

While Mahapatra has denied the charges, former minister and Congress leader Manas Bhuniya indicted the Trinamool Congress Chhatra Parishad for the lynching.

Besides the Congress affiliated Chhatra Parishad observing a students’ strike on Saturday, the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) backed Students’ Federation of India (SFI) organised a ‘condemnation day’ to protest the incident.

The SFI also called a strike in schools and colleges.

(IANS)

Next Story

Will Congress Party be Able to Survive in Future in Face of Modi Onslaught?

It was India’s “Grand Old Party.” The Congress Party ruled the country for 55 out of 71 years since independence

0
congress, modi
From left, Congress party leader Sonia Gandhi, her son and party President Rahul Gandhi, and former Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh attend a Congress Working Committee meeting in New Delhi, May 25, 2019. VOA

It was India’s “Grand Old Party.” The Congress Party ruled the country for 55 out of 71 years since independence. But following the party’s crushing electoral debacle for a second time, there are questions about its future as the Nehru-Gandhi political dynasty at its helm is unable to counter the most powerful leader India has produced in decades: Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Contrary to expectations, India’s mammoth general election turned out to be virtually a no-contest between Modi and Congress Party president Rahul Gandhi as it became a presidential-style battle.

“It is not what went wrong with the Congress, it is more of a story of what went right for Prime Minister Modi. He stood as a tall leader, as an achiever, as somebody who understood people’s aspirations,” says political commentator Rasheed Kidwai, who has authored a biography of Rahul Gandhi’s mother, Sonia Gandhi. On the other hand, “Rahul Gandhi is temperamentally not a power wielder. He is a trustee of power.”

The sixth member of the Nehru Gandhi family to lead the party, Rahul is often seen as a “reluctant politician”, despite his spirited campaign to revive the party and challenge Modi after its rout in 2014.

modi, congress party
India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi waves toward his supporters during an election campaign rally in New Delhi, May 8, 2019. VOA

Gandhi’s rallies drew crowds, but his efforts to project Modi and his Bharatiya Janata Party as a threat to India’s secular traditions or to highlight issues of economic distress failed to resonate. His attempts to nail him for corruption in a deal to buy Rafale French fighter jets fell flat. His promise of a minimum wage for India’s poorest families was met with skepticism, even among the poor.

On the other hand, Modi, successfully wooed voters with his message of strident nationalism and subtle appeal to the majority Hindu community. Along with it, there was another theme: he projected himself as the humble son of a tea seller, a self made man who fought all odds to reach the top post in contrast to what he called the “entitled” Gandhi who had inherited the mantle of leadership of the Congress Party. It drew cheers from the country’s emerging middle and lower-middle classes, exhausted with dynastic politics.

The Congress Party’s tally of 52 seats in parliament was only a notch higher than the 44 seats it won in 2014 in the 545-member parliament. The party’s candidates returned empty-handed in half the Indian states and in several others the party only mustered a single digit tally.Modi’s BJP won 303 seats.

The scale of its losses not just crushed hopes the Congress Party would either lead a credible challenge to Modi or return as invigorated opposition – it once again raised questions over the leadership of the Gandhi family.

congress, modi
The sixth member of the Nehru Gandhi family to lead the party, Rahul is often seen as a “reluctant politician”, despite his spirited campaign to revive the party and challenge Modi after its rout in 2014. VOA

Rahul Gandhi has offered to resign, but expectedly the party that has no second rung of leadership has turned it down. “The party will fulfill its role as a strong opposition. We need Rahul Gandhi to lead us in these challenging times,” Congress Party spokesman Randeep Surjewala said after a meeting of the party’s senior leaders on the weekend.

Rahul Gandhi also lost the Amethi constituency the party had held for 50 years in Uttar Pradesh state. In another humiliating blow for the Gandhi family, his sister Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, who was appointed in a senior post to revive the party, failed to make an impact. Rahul’s mother, Sonia Gandhi, won her party’s only seat in the state.

Rahul Gandhi’s victory in another constituency in South India means he will continue to be a lawmaker. Dynastic politics is not limited to the Congress Party: lawmakers from political families are a routine feature of Indian politics. But political commentators say in an era showing a preference for strong, populist leaders, Modi was the clear victor.

congress, modi
here are questions about its future as the Nehru-Gandhi political dynasty at its helm is unable to counter the most powerful leader India has produced in decades: Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Wikimedia Commons

“There is a new sense of nationalism sweeping across many conventional democracies. There is a yearning for a strong leader that captures the public imagination,” according to political analyst Ajoy Bose. “I don’t really see the conventional Congress Party or the conventional leadership mounting a challenge to Modi. He has completely taken the country by storm.”

ALSO READ: India’s President ‘Ram Nath Kovind’ Designates ‘Narendra Modi’ as PM for Second Term

Gandhi tried to give a positive message after the party’s rout. “We have a different vision of India [from Modi]”, said the head of the party that has long projected itself as a defender of India’s minorities, such as Muslims who worry about religious polarization and a rise in hate crimes since Modi came to power. “There is no need to be afraid. We will continue to work hard and we will eventually win.”

But it may be difficult to reinvent what analysts call a “fading party.” They say Modi’s BJP now occupies the dominant political space that the Congress party did for decades. “Congress is going to get reduced to, you know, like the Liberals did in Britain,” says Rasheed Kidwai. (VOA)