Kolkata: Prof Ujjwal Chakraborty, a senior citizen, residing at Karaya Abasan, is being harassed in a sustained manner for thwarting efforts of individuals wanting to saw off a 75-year-old tree.
Life has become stressful for the 65-year-old retired professor post Amphan.
Ujjal Chakraborty is a national award winning author, who keeps mostly to himself at his residence in order to pursue his creative calling. However, his serene lifestyle has gone for a toss ever since he raised objection against the attempted chopping down of a 75-year-old tree. He claims that since then he has been subjected to immense stress, abuse and coercion by those wanting to saw down the tree.
The most recent attack on the professor was on March 31, 2021, when unknown people attacked his residence. In an email complaint sent by him, the author recounts the attack. The complaint letter read, “I sit and write books, do research or paint, in one of the apartments of Karaya Abasan. The apartment belongs to one of my friends who has allowed me to pursue my creative calling out there. Few days back some unknown people tried to break the apartment’s door. I won’t be able to tell the exact time, as I was not present.”
While talking to eNewsroom he said, “There has been an attempt to break down the wall just above my door. The flat bang opposite mine is empty so I have not been able to get any lead on who attacked the apartment. Also, my apartment is on the topmost floor, and I realized that the lock of the door leading to the terrace is broken. Who is responsible for this, I am not sure of. But, given the fact that the lock of the door is broken, anyone can come down from the terrace, commit a crime and then go back.”
Video of the tree felling attempt in July 2020
He also alleged that this was not the first time that he has been attacked. Almost a year back his car’s windscreen was smashed and acid was thrown on it.
On being asked for the reason he said, “I guess, it’s my love for nature that has made enemies here. Just after the Amphan, I saw woodcutters trying to saw off a perfectly healthy and firmly rooted 75-year-old tree. I raised an objection. Since then these people have put me, a senior citizen, into complete isolation. Attempts are being made to chase me away from this housing.”
He said that most of the residents do not have the awareness nor the nurturing sense to take care of nature and hence have even put nails on the fences to keep away civet cats, an endangered species, which according to Chakraborty used to visit the housing.
eNewsroom contacted Karaya Police station over the phone, but the officer on duty maintained that there were so many cases that he couldn’t recall, and demanded that eNewsroom make enquiries through physical presence.
Meanwhile, Chakraborty has accused the police of ignoring his pleas since one of their officers is the secretary of the housing’s puja committee. He added, “At the moment I am researching how Satyajit Ray’s music can help in treating cancer. Such incidents affect me and my research work deeply.”