Calcutta High Court orders SIT probe into communal violence in parts of the city
The court observed that central force deployment is not required, since the state government has claimed that the present situation is peaceful.
The Calcutta High Court on Wednesday directed the West Bengal director general of police and Kolkata Police commissioner to form a Special Investigation Team to inquire the communal clashes that took place in the city, reported PTI.
On October 9, incidents of communal violence were reported from Kolkata’s Ekbalpur, Mominpur, and Mayurbhanj areas a day after the Muslim festival of Milad-un-Nabi.
On Wednesday, the High Court was hearing two petitions seeking an inquiry by the National Investigation Agency into the communal clashes, reported PTI. The court said that a mandatory report to the Centre under section 6 of the National Investigation Agency Act is required for it to decide whether an investigation by the central agency is required.
The court, however, observed that since the state government report claimed that the present situation in the area is peaceful, central force deployment is not required.
A division bench comprising Justices Joymalya Bagchi and Apurba Sinha Roy also asked state government on Wednesday whether the mandatory provision of communicating to the Centre about bomb explosions during the clashes was followed, reported PTI.
The bench noted that the report submitted by the state mentioned that three out of five first information reports registered in the case were under the Explosive Substances Act.
Following the clashes on Sunday, the Kolkata Police had issued prohibitory orders under Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure that bars the gathering of in the area on October 10 for three days. The Kolkata Police had said 41 persons have been arrested in connection with the violence, reported The Indian Express.
“We are keeping a close watch in the localities,” an unidentified Kolkata Police official told the newspaper on Wednesday. “No untoward incident was reported from the Ekbalpor area since last evening. The situation is peaceful. Heavy police deployment has been made as a precautionary measure.”
Clashes were reported in Kolkata’s Mominpur area on Saturday night over flags held on the Muslim festival of Milad-un-Nabi. The next night, several houses were ransacked and cars were destroyed in the neighbouring Mayurbhanj area.
A mob had also vandalised the Ekbalpur police station.