The police checkpost on Barasat-Basirhat Road and (below) a demolished illegal liquor den behind it. (Pronab Mondal)
Residents of Kadambagachhi in Barasat have blamed lack of police action against illegal liquor dens for the murder of Bikash Mullick, who was beaten to death on Monday by two allegedly drunk youths when he tried to stop them from harassing a homemaker.
According to the residents, Mohammad Jamaluddin and Sirazul Islam, who allegedly beat up the homoeopath, were drinking at an illegal den, barely 150m from the deceased’s home, before they started harassing the homemaker.
“Women have become soft targets as the police do not take action against those who drink in the illegal dens and create nuisance in the area,” said Ramesh Das, a resident of the area.
The residents narrated their plight to deputy inspector general of police (presidency range) Anil Kumar, when he visited the spot on Tuesday and met Mullick’s family members.
Kumar was told how young men from the nearby shanties were making the lives of local women difficult.“We live in fear after sunset, counting minutes till male family members return home. Drunk men often peep into our homes through the windows and sometimes steal our belongings. They threaten us if we dare to protest,” said.
Jyotsna’s son Saikat was threatened with dire consequences when he tried to rescue Mullick.When asked about the illegal liquor outlets, Kumar said: “A crackdown has been started against such outlets. An investigation is also going on.”
The residents demolished five liquor dens behind a checkpost on Barasat-Basirhat Road on Tuesday.
The deputy inspector general also visited the razed outlets, where liquor bottles and hooch pouches were lying.
Sub-divisional police officer Abhijit Banerjee has been transferred after the incident.
Jamaluddin was arrested hours after the incident. After questioning him, cops picked up Islam on Tuesday.
The two were produced in Barasat court and remanded in police custody for five days.
The SUCI called a 12-hour strike to protest the incident. The Forward Bloc supported the bandh.