A heavyweight minister in the state cabinet admitted on Wednesday that crimes against women has become a regular feature.
The admission comes at a time when chief minister Mamata Banerjee and state police DGP Naparajit Mukherjee have described the Kamduni rape and murder as an isolated incident.
Agriculture marketing minister Arup Roy made this admission in a letter to education minister Bartya Basu. Roy requested Basu to introduce karate or similar self-defence training programmes at school and college levels. “We have been witnessing regularly that school and college students in the state are subjected to physical and sexual harassment. This has become a social evil,” the letter reads.
Roy also admitted that administrative alertness is not enough. “Women can resist harassment only if they have the proper self defence training. So I request you to introduce compulsory karate or other self- defence training programmes,” Roy concluded. Basu said nothing has been officially decided.
CPI(M) central committee member Mohammad Salim saluted the minister’s confession about the abysmal law and order situation. “It is just like a go as you like competition. Ministers are speaking in different tunes on the Kamduni rape. It is unfortunate that instead of asking the administration to be alert, the state is passing on the responsibility on women resisting sexual harassment,” Salim said.