BJP in Bengal has questioned the judgement of Calcutta High Court regarding Chhath Puja and said it will not accept the “double-faced” judgement unless the court issues similar order about festivals of other faiths as well.
The High Court last week banned the usual Chhath Puja congregations in West Bengal and said that only two individuals from each family will be allowed to perform the rituals near the water bodies, while large processions, loud music and firecrackers have been strictly prohibited.
BJP’s general secretary in West Bengal, Sayantan Basu, has categorically refused to accept the judgement and said that when they form the government next year, all the festivals would be celebrated in accordance with the High Court order.
“We’ll not restrict anyone on Chhath. Those who perform Chhath Puja are sensible enough. They’ll follow all the covid-related protocols while celebrating,” Basu was quoted as saying by Bengali daily Anandabazar Patrika.
On the topic of the High Court order Basu said, “The government pays heed to High Court order only for the Durga Puja and Chath Puja and not during the festivals of other faiths. We’ll not accept this double-faced order.”
Reports in Bengali media has suggested that BJP was trying to invoke the communal sentiments in the guise of Chath Puja celebrations. The non-Bengali speaking Bihari community is believed to be one of the most loyal vote-bank of the hindutva outfit.
The High Court division bench comprising justices Sanjib Banerjee and Arijit Banerjee directed the state to ensure that the prohibitory orders are followed everywhere.
The division bench asked the state government to take a call on restrictions that need to be enforced on local train travel during the festive days to prevent crowd surge.
Meanwhile, another High Court order, issued by the Green Tribunal, has also banned Chath Puja in closed water bodies such as the Rabindra Sarobar and Shubhash Sarovar in Kolkata, unless the Supreme Court says otherwise.
The Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority (KMDA) has moved the top court, challenging the tribunal order.
With PTI inputs