Mamata does balancing act after anti-rape protests

Last Updated: Saturday, June 22, 2013 - 20:35

Khatra: In a balancing act after massive protests in Kolkata over rise in rapes in West Bengal, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Saturday had sharp words for intellectuals who had deserted her, while appealing for help to raise social awareness against such crimes.

"Some are talking big ... Some are saying that parivartan (change) has taken place because of them. Some are claiming that I became the Chief Minister only because of them," she said addressing a panchayat election meeting in Bankura district.
"I had to fight for 34 years. This did not happen in a day. None should forget this. Parivartan took place because of Ma, Mati, Manush," she said.

Referring to her 26-day fast over the Singur land issue, she asked how many of the intellectuals who are now up in arms against her government were present then, while acknowledging that noted writer and Jnanpith awardee Mahasweta Devi was beside her.

Mahasweta Devi, who has been her supporter but also been critical of her government on various issues, did not take part in yesterday`s protest by intellectuals and prominent personalities.
"These kind of incidents are very bad ... As I have the responsibility, you too have it ... I request those who are connected with literature, drama, films and other fields and (news tv) channels should also build up social awareness while doing their job," she said going into appeal mode during her over 90-minute speech.

"I seek help from everybody so that none can indulge in such bad acts," she said.

She, however, renewed her attack on panelists on some news channels, many of whom she had earlier alleged were linked to pornography, saying "Why in the name of discussions are you teaching children these bad things?"

She again attacked the National Crime Records Bureau for listing West Bengal on top in crimes against women saying "Look at Kerala, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh."

PTI



First Published: Saturday, June 22, 2013 - 20:35

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