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Sandeshkhali: Political War Escalates As Opposition Corners TMC Over Sexual Abuse Charges | Top Developments

BJP continues to corner the Mamata Banerjee led government over the alleged sexual harassment case against TMC leader Shahjahan Sheikh.

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PTI
Row over Sandeshkhali case intensifies in West Bengal | Photo: PTI
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The political tensions continue to escalate in West Bengal over the alleged Sandeshkhali sexual harassment case, with the BJP cornering the Mamata Banerjee-led government over the allegations against TMC leader Shahjahan Sheikh, while the latter has charged the saffron party of fomenting trouble in the state for its political gains.

A large number of women in Sandeshkhali accused TMC leader Shahjahan Sheikh and his supporters of "land-grab and sexually assaulting" them under coercion.

Shahjahan has been absconding after a mob, allegedly affiliated with him, attacked ED officials who had gone to search his premises in connection with a ration scam on January 5.

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Top developments in trouble-torn Sandeshkhali so far:

1) Senior TMC leader Abhishek Banerjee has blamed the opposition for fomenting trouble in Sandeshkhali.

He said the opposition is fomenting trouble in the area and is trying to malign the entire party and the state administration.

He wondered why there were no protests over the death of four kids in Uttar Dinajpur's Chopra. He said Governor CV Ananda Bose was prompt in visiting Sandeshkhali, but is yet to visit Chopra, the TMC MLA said.

2) National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC) chief Arun Halder has said the commission has recommended the imposition of President's rule in West Bengal in its report submitted to President Droupadi Murmu on alleged harassment of women in Sandeshkhali.

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3) The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) has taken note of a troubling incident involving the assault on a woman resident and the callous throwing away of her infant daughter by miscreants in Sandeshkhali and issued a notice to the North 24 Parganas district administration, urging a swift investigation into the matter and emphasizing the need for proper rehabilitation of the affected family.

4) Congress and BJP teams, including Union ministers, stopped from visiting the restive region:

The police blocked visits by Congress and BJP teams, including Union ministers, to Sandeshkhali citing prohibitory orders.

Earlier in the day, a delegation from the BJP, led by Union Ministers Pratima Bhoumik and Annapurna Devi, was intercepted by the police at Rampur village on their route to the Sandeshkhali block.

This prompted a sharp reaction from the delegation, who accused the TMC of instigating lawlessness. Subsequently, they met West Bengal Governor C V Ananda Bose to address the situation.

Congress team led by state president Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury. After a confrontation with police, Chowdhury accused Banerjee of politicising and communalising the issue.

5) TMC has accused the saffron party of trying to "vitiate the atmosphere of the state".

"Police did the right thing by stopping the BJP delegation. It intends to vitiate the atmosphere of the state. When the administration is doing everything to restore peace, the BJP is trying to disturb that for political gains," TMC leader Santanu Sen said.

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He also hit out at Chowdhury and dubbed the "Bengal Congress as the B-team of the BJP."

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