Birbhum/Kolkata: Sunday, which witnessed a massive hashtag movement trending against Islam and Prophet Muhammad on Twitter. A similar model was perhaps being replicated in West Bengal to disturb the communal harmony, during the Maharashtra and Haryana assembly elections. Jharkhand too will have assembly polls in November-December.
However, this time around the efforts of the divisive forces was averted by West Bengal Police and local residents. Learning from past mistakes (Bashirhat), the police officials of Paikar Police station in Birbhum district were effective enough to pick up on Sanjay Kumar (name changed) for posting an offensive post in connection with Prophet Muhammad.
But given the inflammatory content on the post (a snapshot of which lies with eNewsroom) the Muslims from the adjoining area began assembling outside the police station demanding for immediate action against the arrested person.
When contacted Purnendu Bikash Das, officer-in-charge of Paikar Police Station. He said, “Yes, there was a cybercrime case, we have arrested him, and he shall be punished.” On being asked about the tension that gripped the area, he without divulging much details said, “The situation is under control.”
Speaking to eNewsroom, MD Ripon, one of the members of Bangla Sanskriti Mancha (BSM), an NGO, which has been working towards bridging the differences between the two Hindus and Muslims said, “I have been on the spot since the issue began, which was when a boy from Ammudda village began protesting outside the police station. Soon many more joined in. Also, we spotted some boys affiliated with the RSS (Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh) lurking around. However, on being confronted they disappeared from the spot.”
He further said, “The police along with us was able to handle the first batch of protesters, by explaining them the technicality and assuring that the boy would be punished for his offence. However, post-lunch, some local boys in a deliberated state began to create a ruckus once again. This time they even pelted stones. To stop the mob from attacking the police station, the officials had to resort to tear gas and lathi-charge to disperse the mob. The situation is now under control.”
To confirm the authenticity of the information shared, when contacted Purnendu Bikash Das, officer-in-charge of Paikar Police Station. He said, “Yes, there was a cybercrime case, we have arrested him, and he shall be punished.” On being asked about the tension that gripped the area, he without divulging much details said, “The situation is under control.”
However, social activists who have been working in the area since long apprehend that incident could take a sinister turn if things aren’t resolved amicably between the two communities.
Tanmay Ghosh, of BSM, said, “I believe that this particular post was posted on the individual’s page with the sole intention of triggering communal unrest. Seems like people have not learnt from the past, and hence instead of taking a legal recourse, they get instigated. Every individual needs to understand that resorting to violence or using mob violence is not going to help anyone. Rather, by doing so, they will be playing into the hands of those wanting to create communal unrest.”
He added, “The police are alert in Paikar and we have even informed Nabanna regarding the same. Also, I believe that the police and the block president have instructed the pradhans and deputy pradhans that they are responsible for maintaining peace and order in the district. They have also been assured that action would be taken against the accused.”