ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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POLITICS-Squandering a Historic Legacy

Squandering a Historic Legacy BRUTALITIES perpetrated by the repressive state apparatus on the common people in India on the slightest provocation, or even without any, are no longer 'news'; some interest, however, still centres on the response of the political parties to such atrocities. When the news broke out about gang rape and molestation of tribal women in Tripura by the soldiers of the Assam Rifles, the Congress(I) rulers of the state first reacted with denials, followed by evasions and ambivalence, before the resentment and pressures of their tribal partners in the coalition government forced them to order a magisterial enquiry. In sharp contrast, the CPI(M) organs, not only at the local level but also in relatively distant West Bengal, took up the issue immediately. Justified outcries in the CPl(M) press apart, a OPI(M) member of the Rajya Sabha "in an urgent telegram to [union home minister] Mr Buta Singh pointed out that the shocking news of the brutal atrocities and rapes by the Assam Rifles jawans on tribal women is a shame to the nation". Another partner of the West Bengal Left Front, the forward Bloc, also aired similar views. The Congress(I) in West Bengal, as elsewhere outside Tripura, has however kept mum.

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