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Forced conversion to Islam of two BJP workers as ‘punishment’ by TMC, police apathy and more: What Kolkata HC order says, ordering CBI/NIA probe

After their complaint was torn up and the "civic volunteer", the order says, "A complaint has thereafter been addressed to the Superintendent of Police, Malda, on December 8, 2021. The S.P., Malda also did not take any steps. The petitioners, thereafter, complained with the Chairman, National Human Rights Commission and the other respondents herein".

West Bengal was thrown into post-poll violence by TMC goons after BJP lost the Assembly Elections in 2021. Several hundred and thousands of BJP workers were murdered, raped, and driven out of their homes. Rampant arson and violence against political opponents became the order of the day by TMC goons. Amidst the chaos, a shocking case emerged where two BJP workers went missing. They were allegedly forcefully converted to Islam for supporting BJP in the state.

The Calcutta High Court transferred the case to CBI and NIA after serious lapses in the investigation were detected in a case where the two BJP leaders were supposedly given a “punishment” for supporting BJP, by forcefully converting them to Islam.

The order makes several scathing observations and details the police apathy that the wives of the two leaders had to face when they tried to file a complaint in the case after their husbands went missing.

The petitioners in the case were two sisters, whose husbands, both brothers, were BJP leaders. Their husbands went missing on the 24th of November 2021. After that, the sisters filed two complaints, first at the Mothabari Police Station and subsequently to the Kaliachak Police Station. It has been submitted in court that one complaint that was filed was received by the police station, however, was torn up by a “civic volunteer”. The order says, “The said civic volunteer also informed the petitioners that their husbands have converted to Islam”.

The allegations by the petitioner, the two wives, in this case, is that their husbands were forcefully converted to Islam as a punishment for supporting a rival party (presumably by TMC goons for supporting BJP). They have alleged that the conversion took place either under threat and intimidation or under the influence of drugs.

Court order

After their complaint was torn up and the “civic volunteer”, the order says, “A complaint has thereafter been addressed to the Superintendent of Police, Malda, on December 8, 2021. The S.P., Malda also did not take any steps. The petitioners, thereafter, complained with the Chairman, National Human Rights Commission and the other respondents herein”.

While this points towards severe police apathy and dangerous designs by TMC, the state response in the court was far more shocking.

Md. Galib, counsel for the state of West Bengal, submitted in the court that the two BJP leaders had left their homes due to a domestic dispute and converted to Islam of their own free will. It was submitted that the two were residing at Pratappur, Malda and refused to return home. The counsel further submitted sworn affidavits by the two husbands to prove that they had converted to Islam voluntarily. It was also informed that Gouranga Mondal and Buddhu Mondal now go by the names Gousal Azam and Md. Ibrahim.

The court made a scathing observation about the affidavits submitted, saying that “It is not clear as to why the said affidavits have been affirmed and for what purpose”.

Court order

Detailing the police apathy, the court observed, “It is surprising to note that despite receipt of complaints, the IC, Kaliachak PS has not registered FIRs and the Superintendent of Police, Malda has not ordered any steps, as were required to be taken by the Kaliachak Police Station and the Mothabari Police Station, in terms of the decision of the Hon’ble Supreme Court in the case of Lalita Kumari vs Govt. Of U.P. & Ors reported in (2014) 2 SCC 1”.

What the Calcutta High Court said while asking CBI and NIA to investigate: Mass forcible conversions, hoarding of arms, counterfeit currency, cross border infiltration and more

The court said that since the CBI and NIA are parties to the case, it would be best for them to investigate the details.

The court said, “Since the NIA and the CBI are the party respondents to the instant proceeding, appropriate inputs may be given from their side as regards the allegations made in the writ petition. The other allegation of random forcible conversion, cross border infiltration, threats and intimidation, inter alia, by accumulation and storage of huge quantities of arms and ammunition and counterfeit currency may also be addressed. The inputs may be given in the form of a report by way of an affidavit. The Superintendent of Police, Malda, shall extend necessary cooperation to the NIA and the CBI in this regard”.

Ordering the SP of Malda to extend full cooperation to the NIA and CBI, the court said that these larger allegations might not be directly related to the immediate allegations of the forceful conversion of 2 BJP leaders to Islam by TMC goons, however, they appear vitally linked to the case.

Further, the court directed the SP of Malda to submit a detailed report about the allegations levelled by the two petitioners about the forceful conversion and abduction of their husbands.

“The SP, Malda shall independently submit a detailed report by way of affidavit, on the adjourned date on the allegations of the petitioners, the steps taken by the police, any preliminary enquiry report or any other vital information that will be necessary for the determination of the issues in the writ petition. A detailed chronology of events before and after receipt of complaints from the petitioners may also be set out by the SP”, the court said.

Most importantly, the Court directed the Malda police to review their security arrangements since the two women fear that their lives might be in danger.

The next hearing in the case will be held on June 21st, 2022.

The original complaint by the petitioners about the forceful conversion of their husbands, BJP leaders, to Islam, by TMC goons

In the original complaint by the women, whose husbands had been abducted, the women had detailed how they had worked for BJP during the 2021 Assembly Elections and so had their husbands. They have also directly blamed the TMC for threats, intimidation and the forceful conversion of their husband to Islam.

Complaint by the women

In the complaint, the women say categorically that they had faced threats and intimidation from goons belonging to the TMC because they had worked for BJP in the Assembly Elections. They had further said that their husbands were under constant pressure from Muslim persons owing allegiance to TMC to convert to Islam. She says that such threats continued for several months.

Ayodhra Ram Mandir special coverage by OpIndia

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Nupur J Sharma
Nupur J Sharma
Editor-in-Chief, OpIndia.

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