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Letters to the Editor
| 26 July, 2013

Central  forces  on ‘reserve  duty’
SIR, This refers to the reports, “TMC blames SEC for death of ‘innocents’ (23 July) and “Mamata blames SEC for panchayat poll violence” (21 July). Despite the Supreme Court’s verdict clarifying the primacy of the SEC in conducting the panchayat elections, the district administrations followed instructions from the Chief Minister’s office.
 The central forces were kept on “reserve duty” in violation of the SEC’s written orders to deploy them. The Chief Minister also ignored the SEC’s order to take action against those Trinamul leaders whose inflammatory speeches led to  violence in several districts.
 The purpose of the SEC’s legal battle has been defeated. Mamata Banerjee has conducted the panchayat election on her terms.
The central forces were rendered virtually inactive on the plea that law and order is a state subject. This facilitated the process of booth-capturing, terror and violence.
The Chief Minister believes that “offence is the best  form  of  defence”.  She  has  criticised  the  Opposition  parties  and  cast  aspersions  on  the  court  for  the  five-phase  elections.  Her  stated  preference  for  a  one-day  election was disregarded.
Yours, etc., SS Paul, Chakdaha (Nadia), 23 July.
SIR, Enough is enough. Mahasweta Devi once dubbed the Trinamul government as fascist. The Governor has described the present style of governance as goonda raj.
 Both were correct in their evaluation of the present dispensation in West Bengal. The utterances of the ministers and Trinamul MLAs call for the severest censure. Most importantly, the threat to attack Mira Pande, the State Election Commissioner.
Yours, etc., KK Roy Choudhury, Kolkata, 23 July.
SIR, Rape and murder are usually committed by psychopaths  who need to be identified and awarded exemplary punishment. This will call for fresh legislation, proactive policing and a citizens’ forum in the crime-prone areas.  A three-pronged attack can be more effective than armchair analysis, debates on prime channels and processions with candle lights. Whenever an infant is raped and /or murdered, the suspect must be identified with forensic proof or any other suitable method. Such a psychopath  deserves the death penalty.
His body should become government property to be used for biological purposes. Thus will a message be conveyed to society. The police should set up traps to track down the potential culprits. It bears recall that the late Ranjit Gupta (IP) had got rid of “hookers” on Red Road by posing as an innocent office-goer returning from work late in the evening.
 A voluntary citizens’ committee must be formed by engaging unemployed youth and retired police officers. NGOs and corporate houses should come forward to combat infant and child abuse. An all-party intervention is also required.
Yours, etc., Ranajoy Bose, Kolkata, 23 July.
SIR, This is with reference to the report on Michael Madhusudan Dutt’s Birangana Kabya being included in the Class XI syllabus (22 July).
Madhusudhan was converted to Christianity at a tender age under the influence of Derozio. He was a renegade, so his comment on Hindu mythological characters narrated in Hindu scriptures was unwarranted. Ramayana and Mahabharata, the two great epics,  are part of edic literature and, therefore, sacred to the Hindus. No Hindu questions the character of Kunti or Arjun or Draupadi. Madhusudan had once remarked: “I despise Ram and his rebels”. Rabindranath Tagore had strongly criticized him for distorting and belittling characters created by other poets, and even advised him to create themes and characters of his own. Even after 160 years of his misadventure, there is no follower of Madhusudan. I would request West Bengal’s education minister, Bratya Basu, not to offend Hindu sentiment. Instead, the sonnets of Madhusudan can be included in the curricula.
Yours, etc., DC Dey, Kolkata, 23 July.

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