A young facebook user who is staunch Hindu and right wing supporter, made a post on Prophet Muhammad. The post went viral as shops and homes of Hindus in Swarupnagar and Baduria were destroyed and torched by mobs. Nearly 400 paramilitary personnel have been deployed in Bashirhat, Swarupnagar, Baduria and Devganga areas to assist the state police in containing the situation.
The events triggered an ugly spat between the Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and West Bengal Governor Keshari Nath Tripathi, with the former accusing the governor of bullying her over phone and talking dig on the law and order situation prevailing in the state. She also accused the governor of siding with the BJP stating that he was acting like a ‘BJP block President’. People’s life is at stake but BJP and state government are baking their politics on ferocity.
The agitators blocked roads and used tear gas while protesting. Meanwhile, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) President Amit Shah constituted a team comprising Om Mathur, Meenakshi Lekhi, Satyapal Singh and Kailash Vijayvargiya, who will visit the affected area and submit a report to Shah on the issue. The situation in West Bengal’s riot-torn Baduria in North 24 Parganas district remained tense for more than one week. This is the most sensitive area and communal riots between two religious groups are very much common here. Politicians, take it as an opportunity to propagate hatred between two communities.
Schools, shops, markets and business establishments remained shut in and around Baduria, including Keosha market, Banshtala, Ramchandrapur and Tentulia, where prohibitory orders are in force. Four companies of BSF personnel (about 400 personnel) have been rushed to Baduria and adjoining areas of Basirhat, Swarupnagar and Deganga to assist the local administration. Rail blockades at three places on the Barasat-Bongaon and Barasat-Basirhat sections inconvenienced daily commuters. Violence had erupted between Hindu Muslims over a Facebook post, following which a young man was arrested. But so far, no one knows who instigated the young boy to make such post, what was his intention behind it.
Amid the continuing spat between Mamata and her party colleagues and the governor, the BJP demanded that the Centre impose President’s rule in West Bengal and send central observers to assess worsening law and order in the state. Banerjee has criticised the religious leaders of both the communities of that area and warned them of strict action. The BJP alleged that over 2000 Muslims attacked Hindu families in the North 24 Parganas district.
The point to be noted here is 2000 Muslim attacked people who had nothing to do with the Facebook post. Moreover, media tried to conceal the truths in phrases like clash between two communities without mentioning riot perpetrator’s agenda and religion.
Being a border state, West Bengal has a sizeable proportion of Muslim population. Thus, riots are only being expected given the longstanding deep-rooted animosity between the Hindus and Muslims, often fanned by political parties to take forward their agendas. Illegal Bangladeshi immigrants have been made a popular scapegoat in this incident. However, I believe, and there are some statistics to show that the numbers of illegal Bangladeshi immigrants have gone down very significantly over the last 10 years or so.
The clashes, ransacking of shops, looting and burning down of houses continued for three to four more days, and hundred houses and shops were ransacked, and completely or partially damaged or gutted.
The rise in Muslim population along with infiltration of Bangladesh, rioting is a fun activity for some communities after reaching/gaining sufficient strength in any region. Government is not doing anything to stop it so that they can gain Muslim votes and is allowing them to riot at will. Secularism is an alien concept to Islam. Intolerance to non-Muslims is a fundamental concept in Islam. The phenomenon is nothing but height of competitive pseudo- secularism. The competitors are: (a) Trinamool Congress (b) CPI(M) and other left parties, and (c) Congress. The sufferers are Bengali Hindus who are still in majority in the state (but the status may change in another 20 years). There is a definite possibility that Bengali Hindus will again become refugees in their own land. On top of all this, BJP and right wing organizations are trying their best to create unrest.
According to my opinion all Muslims are not intolerant. There can be good Muslims who do not literally follow Islam word by word but a large majority of them are unable to think beyond religion because of some misplaced sense of Muslim identity. It is responsibility of the respective governments to bring people to task and prevent religious fundamentalism (Muslim/Non-Muslim whatever) of any kind from taking an ugly shape if we want India to remain the way it is.
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