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Left spilt women's blood in thousands

Left spilt women's blood in thousands

Author: Saugar Sengupta
Publication: The Pioneer
Date: April 11, 2009
URL: http://www.dailypioneer.com/168824/Left-spilt-women's-blood-in-thousands.html

Agrim tale of murders and atrocities against women seems to stare the Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee Government in the face just before the election. The hard facts pointing at thousands of murders in the past three decades only reinforce the claim that genocide in Nandigram was neither the beginning nor the end of Marxist Government's claim to infamy.

Confidential police reports underscore how West Bengal witnessed no less than 48,000 murders in the past 32 years of the Left Front rule. More shockingly, cruelty towards the better half of society has also seen an alarming increase. As per records, there have been at least 72,500 cases of atrocity against women in the past eight years.

A break-up would show that in the first year of Buddhadeb's rule in 2001, 7,551 women were tortured. The figures in the subsequent years of 2002, 2004 and 2006 stood at 8,746, 6334 and 13,113 respectively. In 2007, 16,059 women suffered atrocities, including domestic violence.

According to police records, 5,952 persons were murdered between 1977 and 1982. This era, however, belonged to what they describe as the "golden age of Marxist rule" when the two party patriarchs, Jyoti Basu and Pramod Dasgupta, ruled West Bengal.

Incidentally, a lesser number of people - 5,171 - died in the 16 years between 1952 and 1967 when Bidhan Roy and Prafulla Sen were the Chief Ministers.

However, senior Home Ministry officials argued that the rise in the number of crimes "is directly proportional to the rate of rise in population". They also felt that number of murders should not essentially mean political murders. "In fact, the majority of murders relate to reasons other than political," a top IPS officer once posted in one of the Maoist-infested districts said, adding that the number of insurgency-related deaths in north Bengal and three Maoist-infested districts of south Bengal had added to the number of those killed.

While during Ray's rule of 10 years, only 2,503 persons were murdered, in the first 14 years of Marxist rule till 1991, about 21,000 people were bumped off. About 2,600 people were eliminated during Prafulla Sen's five-year rule, and the figure during the SS Ray regime was 4,305, which finally saw the ending of the Congress rule in West Bengal.

During Bhattacharjee's regime, the number of those murdered accounted for over 10,000 in the first seven years of his rule. In fact, in the first year of Bhattacharjee's rule, about 1,500 persons were murdered. Between 1977 - when the Marxists came to power - and 2003, the number was around 42,000.

However, according to top police officials, the population of West Bengal during the corresponding period rose from about 4 crore to more than 7.5 crore. The officials also said that the population explosion in Bangladesh had a lot to do with the rising crime rate in West Bengal, adding how the criminals of Bangladesh often "slip into India, commit crime and flee under the cover of darkness."

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