SHAME: CPI (M) goons rape Radharani again in Nandigram

SHAME: CPI (M) goons rape Radharani again in Nandigram
National Alliance of People's Movements (NAPM)

(To read this posting in Hindi language, click here)



The shocking news from Nandigram where the battle is still on, is of the gang rape of Radharani Ari from the village of Gokulnagar and the attack on three other women, all of whom are hospitalized at the Nandigram Public Hospital.

The men who were attacked are said to be missing.

In a fresh attack around midnight and beyond 18 April 2008, known CPI (M) members and Hamad Vahini Party's armed force from Khejuri, who are like goons attacked the house of Radha Rani and Pratap Ari, threw Pratap Ari in the tank nearby and gang-raped Radha Rani Ari for the second time, in her own house.

Radharani Ari is one of the women at the forefront of the struggle. Coming from a dalit landless family, supported by Pratap Ari, her husband, Radharani was always protesting against the Special Economic Zone (SEZ) chemical hub project and giving away the land, houses, nature, and culture of Nandigram. Her heart and soul are in it and she is one of the most articulate and courageous women and had even toured the places of struggle in Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Chattisgarh, Maharashtra, with us in Nandigram-Narmada- Gorai Jatha.

Narmada Sheet, another woman, has also been a very committed and outspoken agitator from Sonachura. Other women attacked, include Mona Pramanik and few men were also missing when the news reached us early yesterday morning. Till this time, Radha Rani, Pratap, Ari and Narmada Sheet and some others are in the Nandigram Hospital and a few in Tamluk.

At least 20 houses have been attacked since yesterday and 100 members of the families, along with houses, much destroyed and belongings looted, have become homeless, left to be supported by the BUPC Committee.

These atrocious incidents occurred in Gokul Nagar, Sonachura, Gadhchakrabedia, under the leadership of Nabakumar Samanta and other CPM active cadres and leaders from Garu Pada, Gokul Nagar, some of whom came from Kejuri.

Reportedly, there were also blasts in some houses, including in the house of one Kokhon Sheet, who was just released, after months long judicial custody.

Nandigram continues to be one of the worst blot on the face of Indian democracy. These atrocities continue to happen and recur in Nandigram with the active involvement of the local CPI(M) cadres and leaders and tacit approval and blessings of the party leadership at various levels. With most of the victims for earlier incidents of violence, not even having received just compensation for atrocities perpetrated against them, and in fact false cases foisted against the victims of violence, as against the perpetrators, these fresh blows in their already scarred lives is nothing short of a death blow to the constitutionally guaranteed rights of the valiant residents of Nandigram.

Condemning the continuing violence in Nandigram in the strongest possible terms, we immediately demand the following:

1. All the accused must be immediately identified, charged and arrested for gang rape, grievous hurt, intimidation, assault, illegal confinement and wrongful detention and other relevant penal provisions.

2. The National Human Rights Commission must take immediate cognizance of the violations in Nandigram and recommend stringent penal action against all those involved, including instituting an inquiry into the involvement of the CPI(M) leadership and cadres in the planning/abetment/execution of the crimes committed.

3. The National Commission for Women must immediately constitute a fact-finding delegation that must visit Nandigram and submit its Report to the NHRC and also direct immediate payment of compensation to all the women raped and all others injured.

4. Free legal, medical, psycho-social and other aid and support must be provided to the women and all victims of state and party violence in Nandigram.

5. Compensation to all the affected and attacked, with houses destroyed and rapes/molestation faced, must be paid immediately as per the High Court orders.

Debjeet Shrikant and Medha Patkar

National Alliance of People's Movements (NAPM)
NAPM, West Bengal.

Bhumi Uchhed Pratirodh Committee, Nandigram
(B.U.P.C. Nandigram)

Purba Midnapur, West Bengal

(To read this posting in Hindi language, click here)