Post-poll violence in Bengal: Pleas in SC seek SIT probe in alleged rape cases

Two separate applications have been filed by the woman and a 17-year-old girl seeking impleadment in the pending petition related to alleged killing of two BJP workers in poll-related violence.
Supreme Court (Photo| Shekhar Yadav, EPS)
Supreme Court (Photo| Shekhar Yadav, EPS)

NEW DELHI: A 60-year-old woman and a minor girl, who have alleged that they have been gang raped by TMC supporters or workers during post-poll violence in West Bengal, have moved the Supreme Court seeking probe by an SIT in these cases.

Two separate applications have been filed by the woman and a 17-year-old girl seeking impleadment in the pending petition related to alleged killing of two BJP workers in poll-related violence in the state.

On May 18, the apex court had issued notices to the Centre, West Bengal government and others seeking their responses on a petition filed by Biswajit Sarkar, whose elder brother was killed, and co-petitioner Swaranalata Adhikari, whose husband was killed in poll-related violence.

The application filed by the 60-year-old woman alleged that she was gang raped in front of her six-year-old grandson by supporters or workers of the state's “ruling political party” on the intervening night of May 4-5.

It alleged that case was registered by the police but it has named only one of the five accused in the FIR.

The plea claimed that a day after the declaration of assembly poll result, the applicant's house was surrounded by a mob allegedly comprising of supports of Trinamool Congress party and threats were hurled asking her family to leave the house or face the consequences.

Alleging that conduct of the state police is “unsatisfactory and non-cooperative”, the application has said that the case be transferred to a SIT or an independent agency.

It had also said that trial of the case be transferred out of West Bengal.

Another application, filed in the top court by the minor girl belonging to a Scheduled Caste community, has alleged that she was gang raped on May 9 by the members or supporters of the ruling political party.

It said that an FIR was lodged in the matter on May 10.

She has sought transfer of probe of the case to a SIT or the CBI and shifting of trial out of West Bengal.

On May 25, the West Bengal government had informed the apex court that three people were arrested in connection with the alleged killing of two BJP workers in poll-related violence on May 2 in the state.

The top court was hearing a plea filed by the victims' kin seeking court monitored probe and transfer of cases to the CBI or SIT.

The plea has also sought direction to monitor the investigation, trial and the progress of criminal cases emanating from the incident and attacks occurring in the aftermath of the assembly elections in the state of West Bengal.

Mamata Banerjee led All India Trinamool Congress had won 213 seats out of 292 seats in West Bengal assembly elections in the hotly contested polls while BJP won 77 seats.

Several violent incidents were reported after supporters of Trinamool Congress and BJP allegedly clashed in various parts of the state since May 2, killing at least 16 people and triggering alleged exodus.

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