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Two held in Bengal’s Balurghat crawling case

Two persons were arrested on Thursday for the incident that took place in South Dinajpur’s Balurghat. Three women were forced to crawl and perform ‘Dandavat Parikrama’ for about 1 km soon after they left BJP and wanted to join Trinamool. The arrested persons are Ananda Roy and Biswanath Das, who were contractual workers in Trinamool led Balurghat municipality. They were produced in court and remanded in judicial custody for three days. The duo had allegedly confined the women before letting them join

The action took place a day after National commission for Scheduled Tribes director Miranda
Ingudam wrote a letter to the state director general of police demanding a report on the matter
within 72 hours. The commission also shows their wish to investigate the incident under Article
338A of the constitution.

Adivasi Sengel Abhiyan calls the arrest to be an eyewash and calls for a strike on April 17. He
also blames former TMC district women’s wing chief Pradipta Chakraborty for being connected
with the incident.

The three tribal women who appeared in the video performing ‘Dandavat Parikrama’ were
Martina Kisku, Thakran Soren and Shiuli Mardi. On April 6, the local BJP unit held a programme
and announced that over 100 people, mostly women, joined them. A day later, on Good Friday,
the incident took place where the three women were seen crawling. On the same day, Pradipta
Chakraborty told the media that the women were misled to join BJP and so as a punishment
they are performing ‘Dandavat Parikrama’.

On Thursday, district TMC chief Mrinal Sarkar said, “One of those arrested is in the party post
and soon will be removed. Police will take action against the guilty and see that no innocent
people get hurt in this case.”

The act was caught on camera and triggered a widespread outrage that prompted state BJP
chief Sukanta Majumdar to write a letter to the president Droupadi Murmu and the National
Commission for Scheduled Tribes.

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