September 21, 2020

Bengal teen’s family ‘concerned about safety’: Bihar team

A team dispatched by the Bihar government to Kolkata in the aftermath of the Madhyamgram gangrape incident has submitted a report to the state home department, stating that “the victim’s family was concerned about their safety and security in Kolkata”.

The move to send the team, led by Inspector General of Police (special branch) J S Gangwar, had been slammed by the West Bengal government.

“The victim’s family was concerned mainly about their safety and security in Kolkata. We have offered to rehabilitate them in Bihar but the family insisted on staying in West Bengal even though the girl’s father was not happy with the job of a taxi driver,” Gangwar, who submitted his report to state home secretary Tuesday, told The Indian Express.

Gangwar said the family was satisfied with Bihar government’s financial assistance of Rs 1 lakh. “They kept talking about their security concerns… they did look under pressure. At the same time, they resolved to stay back and continue their fight from Kolkata to seek justice for the girl,” said the IGP.

The report, however, has no mention of the investigation by the West Bengal Police.The state government had sent the IG and another official to meet the rape victim’s family on January 2. Bihar DGP Abhayanand had said there was “deep concern in Bihar after the rape and alleged murder of the teenaged girl from Samastipur” in West Bengal. The West Bengal Urban Development Minister Firhad Hakim had slammed the Bihar government’s “high-handed” approach and said the move violated the spirit of federalism.

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, however, played down the row, saying, “It is part of standard practice by any state government to share concerns with another state government if its residents face any problems. I had talked to my Rajasthan counterpart after a Bihar girl was gangraped in Sikar,” said Kumar, who is said to enjoy a good rapport with his West Bengal counterpart Mamata Banerjee.

Though Kumar had talked of extending financial assistance to the family of the Sikar rape victim as well, a social activist helping the family said they have not received any compensation so far.

Courtesy: The Indian Express

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