Trinamool MP rape remark: Arrest demanded, wife apologises
Trinamool Congress MP Tapas Paul's rape remark row intensified with the Congress and a rights group demanding his arrest and his wife apologising Tuesday, a day on which another Trinamool leader was seen on video asking partymen to "sacrifice whoever intrudes your home".
Telecast by a Bengali news channel, Trinamool's Bankura district head Arup Chakraborty is seen in the video asking his partymen to "sacrifice whoever intrudes your home".
"If any outsider enters your house, cut him down, sacrifice him. I will take care of that, you don't have to worry," Chakraborty is seen in the video clip telling his party activists in Bankura.
As the day unfolded, Paul's wife Nandini apologised for his comments that have triggered outrage across the country.
"I apologise for his comments. I am saying sorry on his behalf," Nandini told media persons here.
The Trinamool has sought explanation from Paul and will decide on the issue Wednesday, while the Congress and the CPI-M led Left Front have demanded action against Paul.
"If a CPI-M man dares to touch anybody, I will take out my gun and shoot him. I always carry a gun... I will destroy his entire clan. I warn my opponents... I will make their family pay dearly. I will ask my boys to go there. They will rape them and leave," Paul is seen saying in the video that has now gone viral.
The row had its reverberations in the West Bengal assembly too, where noisy scenes were witnessed when Congress members staged a walked out after an adjournment motion on the issue was disallowed by the speaker.
Congress Legislature Party leader Mohammad Sohrab said: "His remarks have shamed entire Bengal, so we demanded a statement from the chief minister stating her stand on the issue. We wanted to know what the government is doing, but that was not allowed. So, in protest we walked out of the assembly."
Leader of Opposition and CPI-M veteran Surjya Kanta Mishra said his party will file a first information report at the place in Nadia district where Paul made the rape remarks.
"The government should have suo motu initiated action against him. Despite courts repeatedly pulling it up, this government refuses to learn its lessons," said Mishra.
Expressing dismay over the "silence" of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in the matter, state BJP president Rahul Sinha said a CD of Paul's speech will be sent to the Lok Sabha speaker seeking action against him.
A host of personalities and activists have demanded exemplary punishment to Paul.
"I am totally stunned to hear his remarks. I have worked with him and never thought he could utter such things. This is shameful," said eminent actor, director Aparna Sen.
Noted novelist Suchitra Bhattacharya said: "It is highly alarming that an elected representative is publicly threatening to let loose men to rape. We strongly condemn the remarks and stringent action should be taken against him."
The West Bengal Commission for Women has put the onus of action on the chief minister.
"We have informed the chief minister about the outrageous remarks made by Paul. Now the ball is in her court. She (Banerjee) is a woman, the chief minister and her party's head. The onus is on her to take action," commission chairperson Sunanda Mukherjee told IANS.
The Trinamool has distanced itself from the comments.
"Trinamool chairperson (Banerjee) is pained after hearing Paul's comments. A decision regarding the matter will be taken tomorrow (Wednesday)," party national general secretary Mukul Roy said. - IANS