MINOR TRIBAL GIRLS GANGRAPED IN SALBONI, SFI DELEGATION MEETS THE RAPE SURVIVORS

Two minor tribal girls on their way to school were abducted, tied to a tree and gang-raped by 6 goons in the forest on their way to the school. One of the girls, aged 16, was taking the other girl, aged 12, to the school. The 12-year old girl is one of the only 2 girls in the Saldohra village near Bankibandh in Salboni who did not drop-out from the school, which is miles away from the village.   

The girls had been repeatedly warned by the goons of such dire consequences if they continue going to school. Since the gangrape of the minor girls, the police have shown the urge and have acted accordingly. All the 6 criminals involved have been arrested, and also been identified by the rape survivors in the TI parade. All of the 6 criminals belong to families of Trinamool Congress supporters, who have been trying to use their political influences to evade the legalities. The local Trinamool supporters are not only pressurizing the families of the survivors to lift the cases in lieu of hefty cash, but have also resorted to threat the villagers. Not only have they beaten the fathers of the two tribal girls, but also have vandalized their cottages. Despite such immense political pressure, the police have not only arrested the accused, and got them identified by the survivors, but also filed the Chargesheet within only 3 days of the incident.

On 29th June, an SFI delegation from the State Committee which included Com. Debojyoti Das and Com. Madhuja Senroy, the Secretary and the President of the State Committee, and also Com. Shatarup Ghosh and Com. Sougata Panda, the Joint Secretary of the Central and State Committee went to the village along with other SFI comrades, and met the survivors and their families to express their sympathy. They also gifted couple of books written by Manik Bandyopadhyay to the girls. They were shocked to learn, that though the police have arrested the accused in no time, yet they are using their political influences to threat the girls, and the villagers and a section of the Trinamool-fostered hooligans are often rallying with motorcycles in the village to proclaim their presence and thereby warning the villagers to have their mouth shut. The SFI leaders and activists also give a deputation in Shalboni police station .  

The girls who have to cross a long path through the Sal forests on their way to school are now afraid to go the school, lest similar consequences might happen to them. Months ago, in March this year, another tribal schoolgirl was being raped and brutally murdered in a neighbouring village. Such incidents of sexual assaults on tribal minors have led to a widespread trauma among the very few tribal girls who have managed not to drop-out from the school despite social and economic pressures.

The irony remains, that while the Left Front government had encouraged and taught the tribal girls to go to the school, this ‘Kanyasri’ government created such a trauma that those girls are now frightened to go to the school for reasons worth. This in a nutshell is the much-hyped PARIVARTAN for the tribal girls of Salboni.