Calcutta High Court on Monday asked Mihir Bhattacharya, superintendent of police, Howrah, to probe the alleged torture of the family members of a Forward Bloc leader by some miscreants, reportedly backed by the CPM. He has been asked to file a report before it by March 23.
Justice Pranab Kumar Chattopadhyay passed the order on a petition by Anusara Begum, 27, sister-in-law of Bloc leader Sheikh Shamim, who is commissioner of Uluberia Municipality.
In her petition, Begum alleged that around 10 pm on August 30, 2004, a mob of 100 armed men raided their house at Raipara, in Chengilem, under Uluberia police station, and molested Shamim's daughter and her.
Her husband Sheikh Shahjahan and Shamim were not in the house then, she said.
The petitioner further alleged that despite an order by the West Bengal Human Rights Commission and a request by chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, the Howrah police did not take any action against the people named in the FIR filed after the attack.
'The mob broke open the main collapsible gate of the house and hit me with a torch. They tore my nightwear and two people started molesting me, while the others ransacked the house,' Begum alleged.
She complained that members of the mob assaulted her four-year-old child Shabnam and molested her 12-year-old niece Asma Khatoon.
Begum said that the mob damaged several items in the house, including colour television sets, refrigerators and a cassette recorder. The attackers also broke open a steel almirah and looted Rs 40,000 in cash and gold ornaments.
'Before they left, the miscreants hit me with an iron rod. When I came to my senses, I found myself admitted to an Uluberia hospital,' Begum alleged in the petition.
Her lawyer Mohd Galib told the court that Shahjahan lodged a complaint with Uluberia police the next day, but no action had been taken. Begum filed a complaint with the human rights commission after her release from the hospital, the lawyer said.
The chief minister's confidential assistant Joydeep Chatterjee had also asked superintendent Bhattacharya to inquire into the matter.