The Calcutta High Court today revoked Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s decision to ban immersion of idols on Muharram and ordered her to make alternate arrangements for Tazia processions and Durga idol immersion respectively. The court even challenged the government’s ideology saying, it cannot obstruct the citizen’s right to practice a particular religion on the assumption of law and order disruption. Meanwhile, Mamata Banerjee slammed the High Court’s decision by coming out aghast, “Slit my throat but no one tells me what to do. I will do what I can to keep the peace.”
Earlier in her ruling, Mamata Banerjee had prohibited immersion of Durga idol after 10 pm on September 30th and October 1st speculating communal unrest due to both the occasions of Muharram and Vijay Dashami falling on same dates.
The Calcutta High Court also ordered the state government to ensure strict vigilance of the festivities to avoid any unprecedented disruption during the Muharram or idol immersion procession. The bench also directed the administration to announce the designated routes to be followed for different processions through advertisements, to ensure safety and amity amongst the people.
Acting Chief Justice of Calcutta High Court Rakesh Tiwari stated, “Let them (Hindus and Muslims) live in harmony, do not create a line between them.” He also asked the government to provide a “substantial reason” for its decision to stop the immersion of Durga idols after 10 pm on September 30 and on October 1 on account of Muharram.
While inaugurating a Durga Pooja in South Kolkata, Banerjee sharply reacted to the charges of “appeasement politics” slammed against her by the centre, she said “I do not believe in appeasement. These comments are deeply insulting. I believe in the religion of humanity that talks about the harmony among all the religions,”.
Blaming the centre for conspiring against her time and again, she said that “the centre tries to hatch a conspiracy against me intermittently with the help of agencies. But I believe in divine powers and I have the ability to demolish all conspiracies plotted against me.”
Meanwhile, the BJP quarters celebrated the HC order citing that the state government’s attempts to divide citizens into religious lines and to reap electoral benefits out of it has been foiled successfully.
West Bengal BJP President Dilip Ghosh was quoted as saying, “the same thing happened last year but the state government ignored it. It’s sad that the Hindus in Bengal are deprived of their religious rights. They have to depend on the judiciary to celebrate Durga Pooja.”
Banerjee also defended her stand to say she celebrates the festivals of all communities with equal fervour and no one raises a question of appeasement when we celebrate Chhath pooja or Buddha Purnima in the same vein.
Tags: Mamata Banerjee, Idol immersion, Durga pooja, HC verdict, Muharram,Festivities, Tazia, Calcutta High Court, Festive spirit.