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Mamata Banerjee and the art of defending inhumanity

No matter the crime, the response from Mamata Banerjee is the same - a dismissal. Be it infant deaths to be blamed on the previous government, rapes to be dismissed as fiction, farmer suicides to be claimed as fake or journalists beaten to be "cooked up" propaganda. It isn't too long ago that she stormed into a police station to get two party workers who had been arrested for rioting freed.

Yet, like the inexplicable devotion of Narendra Modi fans, you have a smaller, but very definite section of people who see nothing wrong with the woman. Making my stand clear.

I think regardless of the number of rapes, infant deaths, farmer suicides, or instances of violence, the response of people in authority needs to be compassionate, not dismissive. Certainly not dismissive in a way that threatens to obstruct justice like denying it happened at all.

Here are some defenses and what I think about them.

"forget what Mamata is *saying* concentrate on what she's *doing*"

Well, Mamata is denying that serious crimes happened at all. If crimes didn't happen, then there is no need for any change to happen, no? In other words, she is preventing victims justice. She is preventing serious security issues in society from being addressed by denying that there is a problem at all. I think this is pretty serious doing.

"Either you're "unaware" of past CPM govt... or "deliberately" maligning Mamta"

I will speak of the CPM government when they are in power. Right now, it is Mamata's job, which she is shrugging off. The CPM cannot be held responsible for her views. As for maligning, she is the one who actually denied that a victim of rape had been raped at all because her husband used to support CPM. She is the one claiming serious crimes in the state to be fiction and Leftist conspiracies. I fail to see how this computes as CPM maligning her, when she is the one making accusations blaming non-political criminal cases in the general public on political parties and washing hands off on responsibility.

"One last comment, CPM upper caste. Mamta is Bhee, the kaamwali bai caste in Bengal."

This doesn't mean that victims of crimes should be called fakers. I fail to see how the CM's caste has any bearing on her dismissal of the existence of serious crimes.

"hospitals were not messing up before she came to power? babies didn't die before she came to power."

This is the logic used to compare the 2002 riots with 1984 ones. It is bullshit logic. Hospital infrastructure and thus mortality rate perhaps can't be fixed that fast, but utter denial of there being a problem can't fix it at all. Poor facilities, lack of staff can be explained as inherited from earlier government, but not denial of admission to pregnant women who end up delivering on the street. There is utter lack of recognition of problems being pointed out. Everyone knows problems don't get fixed overnight. No one is expecting superwoman. The issue is with her refusing to admit there is a problem at all, with blaming previous government for all problems. Would you accept responsibility of previous government if your wife or yourself delivered on the street because the doctors refused to admit you? What exactly do you expect people to do if the existing government can't ensure treatment - however good or bad the facilities - vote previous government back into power to ask for answers?

"Rape / Looting / Dacoity is happening in Delhi / Noida / Punjab / Mumbai more than Bengal"

The issue isn't with "how much" crime, but the willingness of the leader of the state to crackdown on crime instead of victims. There has been outrage against many leaders for such attitude. Mamata Banerjee isn't alone. See Wall of Shame. Though of course she alone will be criticized for things she said - like she didn't get criticized for the bigotry of others. And Mamata Banerjee shouldn't be excused either. If she acts inhuman, she should be criticized for it, not excused.

"If you really want to know the truth get the ncrb datas. Its given state by state, district by district, city by city"

The NCRB data on Farmers Suicides categorically exposes her bullshit in claiming that there are no farmer suicides in West Bengal. How about that, instead of discussing Rajasthan as a part of the subject Mamata Banerjee

"In politics, one looks behind the scenes. Infant mortality & exploitation of women going on for ages. Communist party!!!"

If Mamata was incapable of providing governance for a state that had been previously ruled by a Communist Party, she shouldn't have contested elections. Current problems must be faced by current governments or they should resign and bring back old governments and ask them to rule till they feel capable of assuming responsibility. Citizens should not be expected to suffer human rights abuse in the name of governments no longer in power. No one is asking for a zero rate, but the utter refusal to admit problems as a responsibility at all is a very fucked up attitude for a government.

"yeah right, at least she cared to reply.."

The Union Government has consistently replied all kinds of bullshit on the question of corruption. At least they care to reply. They must not be criticized and allowed to continue. This is bullshit logic. Would you accept a crime against you being called fake as a reply to your crisis?

"And yeah she does not know how to talk the way intellectuals do. Its media hounding her, thats all"

Well, she is expected to be somewhat intelligent to rule a state. There is no getting around that. As for the things she says, you cannot say inhuman words without forming them out of inhuman thoughts. Media can hound her, but media cannot fake her replies. If she replies with compassion, the worst they can do is not report it. If she victimizes the victims and they report it, they my have hounded, but what she did doesn't change.

"she is prone to make idiotic comments"

Idiotic comments don't manifest out of thin air. It is our thoughts that get blurted out carelessly. If the thinking is compassionate, it will sound stupid, but not necessarily offensive. The other thing is the euphemism of denial of rape as idiotic. It isn't idiotic to call a rape victim to be pretending to be raped out of a political agenda. It is an inhuman political attack on another party further abusing the poor victim by punishing her for reporting the rape and preventing the crime from being taken seriously. It isn't idiotic. It is malicious politics at the cost of the common man.

There is endless logic. The sum total is that Mamata Banerjee is good at heart, just stupid in dealing with media. Well, that sucks, because as Chief Minister, it is an important responsibility. If she excuses rapes or covers them up in National Media, she is also blatantly creating the impression of impunity for rape. If a rape victim is publicly humiliated in the national media, it amounts to a threat of being discredited, humiliated and denied justice for future victims if they report crimes against them.

She may be the greatest human in personal contact, but she has no business leading a state if she cannot conduct herself in a way that at least prevents further victimization of people, if not promotes their safety. She should get into social service and one on one compassion, which people claim she is so good at.



Founder at Aam Janata
Vidyut has a keen interest in mass psychology and using it as a lens to understand contemporary politics, social inequality and other dynamics of power within the country. She is also into Linux and internet applications and servers and has sees technology as an important area India lacks security in.

1 thought on “Mamata Banerjee and the art of defending inhumanity

  1. Anonymous

    I absolutely agree. It's kind of silly to think of Bengali's as an intelligent lot especially after they voted this fascist maid servant to power. Wish someone would get rid of her.


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