PIL Filed At Calcutta HC Against Mamata’s ‘Jihad’ Comment

Kolkata:  A PIL was filed in the Calcutta High Court on Monday against the recent comment of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee claiming that her Trinamool Congress will declare “Jihad” against the BJP at the party’s forthcoming Martyrs’ Day programme on July 21.

The PIL has been filed by Nazia Ilahi and a division bench of Chief Justice, Prakash Srivastava and Justice Rajarshi Bharadwaj, directed that a copy of the petitions be forwarded to the Chief Minister and the matter will be heard after a couple of weeks.

The petitioner’s counsel Tanmay Basu argued that such comments from the Chief Minister were completely unwarranted. “The Chief Minister should not have made such a comment against the principal opposition party in the state. She has not even withdrawn the word,” he said.

In his counter-argument, Advocate General S.N. Mukhopadhyay said the statement of the Chief Minister is being misinterpreted.

“The word ‘Jihad” means ‘Struggle’ or ‘Fight’. The PIL has no merits to get admitted. The statement was not made with the intention to harm. BJP often speaks of ‘Congress- free India’. Does that mean instigating attacks against Congress workers? If that is not so, then there should not be unnecessary slurs over the Chief Minister’s comments,” he contended.

Recently, Jagdeep Dhankhar had written to Banerjee, asking her to withdraw the “most unconstitutional declaration of ‘jihad’ against the BJP on July 22, that she made in one of her latest public speeches”.

“I cannot, but take the strongest possible exception to your statement. To subserve democratic value and constitutionalism, you are urged to forthwith withdraw this most unconstitutional declaration of ‘jihad’ against the BJP on 21 July, 2022. I would appreciate your immediate response to the above,” the Governor’s letter read.

In the letter, he also pointed out that that statement revealed in the video was unfortunate and indicated constitutional anarchy. “It defies logic and reason as to how one under the Oath of Constitution and holding the position of Chief Minister could make such pernicious declaration of ‘jihad’ against a political party. This is death- knell of democracy and rule of law. Nothing can be more authoritarian and undemocratic,” Dhankhar added.

(IANS)