The Madhyamgram gangrape and murder case had turned a chunk of the city’s intelligentsia against the Mamata Banerjee government.
For the second consecutive day, the intellectuals organised a rally in protest against the incident and state government’s attempted suppression of the case.
Many of those present had once been ardent supporters of the Trinamool Congress. Wednesday’s rally was attended, among others, by Aparna Sen, Samir Aich and Miratun Nahar.
"I have not come here to hide my face behind a black ribbon. This is the time to protest," Subhankar Chakraborty, academician and former principal of Asutosh College told the media on Thursday.
"The time is ripe to tell the citizens that when a government fails to protect our daughters, it should be evicted from power." "While those who are committing crimes are roaming freely, the government is penalising those raising voices against such crimes," said Nanigopal Poddar of Sutia Gonodhorshon Pratibadh Mancha.
Mousumi Koyal, a prominent face of the Kamduni crusade, said: "I never thought that I would get such a shameful gift from the society".
January 2 being the 25th anniversary of the murder of communist playright and actor-director Safdar Hasmi, the day was considered apt for the protest. Wearing black badges and carrying candles, the protesters had gathered near the near the Academy of Fine Arts, a landmark in Central Kolkata.
What incensed them further was the comment made earlier in the day by chief secretary Sanjay Mitra – that politics was being played over the case.
"The chief secretary is right," former mayor and a senior CPIM leader Bikash Bhattacharya said in a sarcastic vein. "But he didn’t say which political party had asked to police to take the body to the burning ghat, so it could be cremated without the permission of the parents."