Justice Markandey Katju-
Justice Markandey Katju is a former Judge, Supreme Court of India, and former Chairman, Press Council of India. The views expressed are his own.
Soon after the huge TMC victory in the recent West Bengal elections violence is taking place in several parts of the state. How does one explain this? I will venture an answer.
Soon after Hitler became Chancellor of Germany in January 1933 his storm troopers, the Sturm Abteilungen ( S.A. ) began their rampage throughout Germany, looting Jewish shops, and beating up their political opponents, the Communists, Social Democrats, etc.
These storm troopers were nothing but unemployed lumpen elements and goons, who thought that since they had supported Hitler in his rise to power they now deserved the fruits of their service to the Nazi Party in the form of jobs, etc. Since there were no jobs ( in view of the recession in the German economy following the worldwide Great Depression ) they had the right to fill their stomachs by looting and other acts of vandalism and terrorism.
The same has happened in West Bengal. The Congress cadres ( = unemployed goons and hoodlums ) in West Bengal switched over to the TMC after the latter was formed by Mamata Banerjee. Now that the TMC has registered a massive victory in the West Bengal elections, these unemployed goons and lumpen elements want a pound of flesh, they want to be rewarded by jobs, etc. There are few jobs in West Bengal, so all they can do now is go on a rampage and loot shops, terrorize people into paying them ‘protection money’, and do acts of plunder and marauding.
People in West Bengal are scared to speak out against them for fear of being beaten up, and the police often turns a Nelson’s eye to the vandalism of these hoodlums and ruffians, since the TMC is in power and policemen who take action against these goons may be victimized ( like Damyanti Sen ). Mamata Banerjee has no doubt issued a statement that she will not tolerate violence, but this is just paying lip service. She always supports the TMC cadres, and she knows that if she really takes strong action against these goons she will lose her supporters. Moreover, she is herself a fascist who cannot brook criticism, as was evident when she got Jadavpur University Professor Ambikesh Mahapatra arrested for sharing her cartoons on the social media, or the farmer Shiladitya Choudhary who only told her in a meeting that she had not kept her election promises to farmers, and was promptly declared a Maoist and got arrested.
So Bengal will witness an era of anarchy and lawlessness, and turn into an inferno in the coming days. One can only feel sorry for Bengalis.