Birbhum: A senior cop was suspended hours after Mamata’s visit, and the NHRC will investigate the killings

An order from the state’s additional director general of police (law and order) read that Inspector of Police Tridip Pramanik was suspended with immediate effect for gross misconduct and dereliction of duty.

On Thursday, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee meets with victims’ families in Bogtui village, Rampurhat, Birbhum district.

Two senior police officers were suspended with immediate effect on Thursday, just hours after West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee visited violence-hit Birbhum and met families of victims who were burned alive earlier this week.

While Tridip Pramanik, the inspector in charge of the Rampurhat police station, was suspended for “gross misconduct and dereliction of duty,” Sayan Ahmad, a sub-divisional police officer (SDPO), was transferred as an officer on mandatory waiting.

According to an order from the state’s additional director general of police (law and order), Pramanik was suspended with immediate effect for gross misconduct and dereliction of duty unbecoming of a member of a disciplined police force. The SDPO was suspended and transferred by the government a few hours later.

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Eight people were killed in a village in Rampurhat on Tuesday, including two children, after several houses were set ablaze in the aftermath of the killing of a local Trinamool Congress leader, Bhadu Sheikh. The violence, according to locals, was caused by a factional feud within the ruling Trinamool Congress. So far, 23 people have been arrested in connection with the case. Anirul Hossain, the block president of the Trinamool Congress, is among those detained in the case.

Mamata Banerjee
Mamata Banerjee

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) announced that it had taken suo motu notice of the killings and would investigate the matter. A team from the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) will conduct investigations in the district, according to NHRC chief (retired) justice Arun Mishra.

Earlier in the day, Banerjee, who also leads the Trinamool Congress, met with the families of eight victims and announced that each would receive a compensation of Rs. 5 lakh.

Two families who lost their children in the chaos will receive an additional $50,000. A further 2 lakh would be given to each family to help them rebuild their homes that were destroyed in the fire, as well as a job for one member of each family.

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Since the incident, political tensions have been high, with the BJP and Congress calling for Banerjee’s resignation and the ruling camp accusing the opposition of exploiting the killings. During the day, a delegation of TMC leaders met with Union Home Minister Amit Shah to demand that Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar be removed for violating constitutional norms.

BJP MP Saumitra Khan rushed to the Well from his last-row seat in the Lok Sabha, shouting slogans against the Trinamool Congress government and briefly sitting in the aisle, alleging that Bengal has turned into a “land of terror.”

Congress member Gaurav Gogoi also slammed the state government for denying Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, the party’s leader in the House, access to the site and detaining him nearly 90 kilometres away, calling it a “blow to democracy.”

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