In the aftermath of the Pulwama terror attack, a series of mob reactions have been reported from across West Bengal. The mobs have been targetting people saying anything against the country or the Pulwama incident, claiming that nothing is personal if one is speaking about the country.
In one such incident, the video of which has gone viral on Facebook, a mob is seen barging into the house of a teenager in Coochbehar district calling him a traitor’.
“We are at the house of an anti-national” claims the caption of the video posted by a person named Sarbajit Saha. A mob is seen forcing its way into the residence of first year college student Anik Das in Coochbehar town.
The mob accused Das of sharing a voice recording on social media where he allegedly said that he does not love his country. Parents of the 22-year-old stood shocked while pleading with the mob to calm down even as the angry crowd demanded that Das come out of his room.
Visibly disturbed, the teen’s mother is seen slapping her son as the entire drama was broadcast Live on Facebook by the mob.
“Your father used to work in the BSF and you have grown up as a desh drohi”, someone was heard saying from behind the camera.
“Bring out your anti-national son. He posted against the Army,” the mob was heard saying in the video.
Soon, the crowd decided to take the teenager out of his house on to the street. “Whatever happens shall happen out in the open, in front of the public,” the mob was heard saying.
Das tried to clarify that he had made the comment on a personal whatsapp group to which someone replied saying, “There is nothing personal. If you are in India, everything is Indian!”
“Drag him out of here,” shouted another person as the crowd accosted the teenager while raising ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai’ and ‘Indian Army Zindabad’ slogans.
“I simply said that I neither support nor oppose this but I am not an anti-national,” the teen was heard saying but his feeble voice got drowned as the mob shouted at him asking, “Why will you not love your nation?”
Soon, he was forced him to kneel down on the road and raise ‘Pakistan Murdabad, Indian Army Zindabad’ slogans.
Amidst cries that he should be sent to Pakistan, the teenager’s ordeal, which lasted for 15 minutes ended with him walking bare body with a tricolor wrapped around him while raising patriotic slogans.
In another incident in North 24 Pargana’s Bongaon, another group can be seen assembling at the residence of a school teacher Chitradeep Shome to confront him over his social media post where he allegedly questioned the use of the term “martyr” for those killed in the Pulwama attack.
Shome could be seen clarifying that a section of his comment was being circulated out of context but the mob is seen forcing him to raise “Bharat Mata Ki Jai” slogan while touching the ground.
“I am an Indian too,” Shome is heard saying while the crowd insists that he fold his hands and apologize Live on Facebook for hurting the Indian sentiments.
Reacting to such incidents, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee blamed the BJP and RSS of trying to fan communal trouble in the state.
“We have been noticing a new trend. Individuals are being accused of being anti-national. Suddenly, RSS, VHP and BJP cadres are coming out on the streets with the trilocor at midnight. These communal forces are trying to spread hatred and create panic. I have instructed the police to remain alert against such forces trying to fan riots,” Banerjee said, addressing the media at the state secretariat on Monday.