KOLKATA — A case was registered on Wednesday against unknown persons for threatening eminent Bengali poet Mandakranta Sen with gangrape for expressing solidarity with fellow poet Srijato who recently was embroiled in a controversy after writing a poem allegedly hurting Hindu sentiments.
“I have been threatened with gangrape,” Sen wrote on Facebook alongside the obscene threat message by one Raja Das.
Soon after Sen uploaded the message on her Facebook wall, there was a huge protest by intellectuals and her fans.
“I am not worried about myself. The only way to fight fundamentalism is to go on writing more and hold more rallies,” the poet told reporters.
Sen not only stood by Srijato after a controversy broke out over the latter’s poem on Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, she also participated in a rally to protest againt the attack on him.
A Hindutva group had lodged a police complaint against Srijato for allegedly hurting “Hindu sentiments and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath” in a Facebook post.
Srijato had posted a 12-line poem on his Facebook page on March 19, the day Adityanath was sworn in as Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh.
Srijato today expressed disgust and condemned the rape threat against Sen.
A senior officer of Kolkata Police said they were checking the authenticity of the profile from which the threat was made to Sen.
“Our officers are checking whether the profile from which the threat was made to Sen is real or a fake one. Then we will proceed with the requisite investigation to spot him,” the officer said.
Incidentally, Sen in 2015 had returned her Sahitya Akademi Young Writers Special Award to protest against communal attacks in the country.
The BJP today presented a divided house on the rape threat. While its national secretary Rahul Sinha criticised it, state BJP president Dilip Ghosh accused Sen of indulging in “cheap publicity” stunts.
“We condemn such threats to a woman. Even if she professes an ideology which is opposite to ours. We are against such threats to a woman. This cannot be tolerated in a civilised society,” Sinha said.
“These are nothing but publicity stunts by Left intellectuals to remain in news. The police will do their job. But we feel this is nothing but cheap publicity business,” Ghosh said.