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India: Calcutta feminists arrested for protesting against the twin incidents of rape and murder of students | statement by NTUI

13 June 2013

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NTUI condemns the arrest of Maitree members protesting against the twin incidents of rape and murder of students

An impatient administration that tries to stifle the voice of protests, unmasks itself much more than critics can possibly do. This morning, members of Maitree, a Kolkata based network of women’s group, assembled peacefully outside Mamta Banerjees residence asking for an appointment to submit a letter of protest to the Chief Minister against the two recent cases of gang rape and murder. They had earlier tried to hand over the same at the Writers building on Monday but she had refused to meet the delegation. The grotesque rape, murder and violence against two students in Barasat and Krishnaganj, Nadia, in the last few days is an ample indication of the appaling law and order sitution in the state and the administration’s dismal failure to ensure safety and security of women. The members of Maitree wanted to draw the Chief Minister’s personal attention to this in a bid to ensure her personal intervention in this issue.

Instead of receiving their protest letter, the police arrested 13 women instantly. Anuradha Kapoor, Swapna, Kakali Bhattacharya, Anchita Ghatak, Shyamali Das, Ratnaboli Roy Sharmishtha Dutta Gupta, Shreya Sanghari, Madhura Chakraborty, Shreya Chakraborty, Sudeshna Basu, & Aditi Basu were whisked away to Lalbazar where they are currently detained at the Labazar central lock up. Abir Niyogy who was earlier taken away to Kalighat police station and has been currently transfered to Labazar central lock.

NTUI strongly condems this arrest by the police and demands an immediate and unconditional release of the members of Maitree. We strongly uphold the peoples’ right to dissent and protest. We also call upon the Government, judiciary and law enforcing agencies for an immediate arrest of culprits, a proper investigation and a fair and unbiased trial which would enable victims and their families in accessing justice and lead culprits towards due punishment; otherwise this wave of brutality against women would remain endless and unabated.

June 13, 2013

New Trade Union Initiative (NTUI)
West Bengal State Organising Committee
4/1 Bhabanath Sen Street, Kolkata-700004
Telephone - (33) 2543 5381

Head Office : B-137, First Floor, Dayanand Colony, Lajpat Nagar –
IV,New Delhi – 110024
Telephone: +91-11-2621 4538
Telefax: +91-11-2648 6931
Email: secretariat at

UPDATE: protest rally in calcutta on 18 June 2013

Time: 3:30pm
Where: from: Y channel opposite Metro Cinema to: the Academy of Fine Arts
A rally is being organised by the Maitree—a network of women’s organisations and activists [on Tuesday, 18 June, 2013] to raise our voices against the continuing incidents of crimes against women. In the state as well as the country, it is deeply disturbing to find rising incidences of violence against women and girls. We need to come together in solidarity, in criticising administrative failures in curbing, preventing and punishing instances of such violence; showing solidarity with survivors and the families of the victims; building large scale public awareness about such incidents.
Keeping in mind particularly the brutal and horrific incidents in Barasat and Nadia recently, we invite everyone to join in this rally in large numbers.
We do not endorse calls for death penalty so please desist from such demands at the rally.

West Bengal: ’How we were arrested for protesting against violence towards women in West Bengal’ by Anchita Ghatak