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‘Don't Compare It To Manipur’: Supreme Court On Sandeshkhali Violence

In Sandeshkhali, multiple women have raised allegations of systemic sexual exploitation and land grabbing against several leaders of the Trinamool Congress (TMC).

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PTI
Sandeshkhali Violence| Photo: PTI
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The Supreme Court on Monday declined to entertain a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) seeking a Special Investigation Team (SIT) probe into the allegations of sexual violence against women in West Bengal's Sandeshkhali.

The petitioner attempted to draw comparison between Sandeshkhali and the state of Manipur, where ongoing ethnic clashes led the Supreme Court to step in, form a SIT, and appoint a panel of retired judges. 

However, Justice Nagarathna said, “Don’t compare this with Manipur. Manipur is still an ongoing thing.”

The petitioner, advocate Alakh Alok Srivastava withdrew the PIL and the matter was dismissed as withdrawn.

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About The Case:

In Sandeshkhali, multiple women have raised allegations of systemic sexual exploitation and land grabbing against several leaders of the Trinamool Congress (TMC). The women have accused Sheikh Shahjahan, a member of the local Zila Parishad, as the prime culprit.

These allegations surfaced after Sheikh Shahjahan went into hiding. In January, a team from the Enforcement Directorate en route to Shahjahan's residence in Sandeshkhali was attacked, leading to his subsequent absconding.

Two of Shahjahan's close associates, Shibaprasad Hazra and Uttam Sardar, who also hold positions within the TMC, were arrested following police action based on complaints by women in the area.

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The situation in Sandeshkhali has become a major political issue.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has accused the BJP of causing trouble, while the BJP and the National Commission for Women (NCW) have accused the TMC and the state government of involvement in crimes against women in the area.

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