Cal HC refuses urgent hearing on PIL seeking protection for Sandeshkhali women

The court sought more substantial evidence beyond newspaper reports from the petitioner, indicating a need for direct involvement or specific information

Calcutta High Court
Calcutta High Court


The division bench also said since a single bench was already scheduled to hear a matter over Sandeshkhali, it could not conduct parallel proceedings, and asked the lawyer to watch the proceedings before the court of justice Kaushik Chanda, before whom a petition regarding Sandeshkhali is listed for hearing, and if she has any independent material, to request intervention in that proceeding.

Some villages in Sandeshkhali community development block II in North 24 Parganas district have been witnessing protests over allegations of sexual abuse of women and land grabbing by local TMC leaders and their associates.

The Calcutta High Court on Monday refused to take up for urgent hearing a PIL (public interest litigation) seeking protection to women residents in the Sandeshkhali area over allegations of sexual atrocities against them by local leaders of the ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC).

A division bench presided over by chief justice T.S. Sivagnanam asked whether the petitioner is an elected representative like an MLA or a panchayat pradhan or a resident of Sandeshkhali or whether the person visited the affected area, saying only attaching copies of newspaper reports with the petition would not be enough.

The chief justice told the lawyer petitioner that the basic requirements of a PIL needed to be satisfied for it to be taken up.

The petitioner lawyer prayed for an urgent hearing of her PIL, seeking protection to the women villagers of Sandeshkhali in West Bengal's North 24 Parganas district.

The division bench, also comprising justice Hiranmay Bhattacharya, told the lawyer verbally that it could not take up the petition for an urgent hearing.

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