Tripura HC asks state govt to take measures to maintain peace

  • | Saturday | 30th October, 2021

Agartala, Oct 30 (PTI) Tripura High Court has directed the Biplab Kumar Deb government to submit an affidavit by November 10 about actions taken by it and its plans to defuse tension at Panisagar following the alleged vandalisation of a mosque, houses and shops there earlier this week. A division bench of the court comprising Chief Justice Indrajit Mahanty and Justice Subhashish Talapatra took up a suo-moto public interest litigation on Friday and sought a report by the state government by November 10 on the alleged vandalisation in North Tripura district. The judges also wanted to know what actions had been taken with regard to fake social media posts. The High Court took notice of Deb’s announcement of providing compensation to people affected in the violence and directed the government to take urgent action for giving compensation to the affected people. A mosque was vandalised and two shops were set ablaze at Chamtilla area in Panisagar subdivision of North Tripura district on October 26 evening during a Vishwa Hindu Parishad rally which was taken out to protest against the recent violence against Hindus in neighbouring Bangladesh. Three houses and a few shops, reportedly owned by members of the minority community, were also ransacked in nearby Rowa Bazar, according to the state police. Tripura Advocate General Siddhartha Shankar Dey told the High Court that the state government has already taken adequate security arrangements for the protection and security of religious places, specially those belonging to the minorities and cases have been registered against the fake social media posts. The advocate general said in an affidavit that “some clash” had taken place between two communities during a protest march on October 26 and both the communities had lodged complaints at Panisagar police station. Dey also stated that peace meetings were organized by the government at Dharmanagar and Panisagar in North Tripura district, Amtali of West Tripura, Kulubari and Laxman Dhepa of Sepahijala district to maintain peace and stop the spread of fake news. Besides, additional security forces were deployed in the area and measures were taken to guard religious places. There were rumour mongering and misinformation campaigns in the social media replete with photos and videos of incidents outside the state and foreign countries to disturb communal harmony, he added. To this the High Court suggested that the state government should organize more peace meetings not only at district levels but also at sub-divisional as well as panchayat levels and asked political parties to fully participate in the peacemaking process. The Tripura government had on Friday alleged that a group from outside the state and harbouring vested interest had hatched a conspiracy to create unrest in the state and malign its image by uploading a fake photograph of a burning mosque on social media. Police had investigated the incident and found that no mosque was burnt in Panisagar sub-division in North Tripura district as claimed by posts in the social media posts, Information and Culture minister Sushanta Chowdhury had said. "Fake news was uploaded in the social media on October 26 by a vested interest group from outside to create unrest in Tripura and to disrupt the process of development of all sections of people in the state,” Chowdhury had said in a video message. He said it was a conspiracy to malign the image of the BJP government in the state and appealed to the people to maintain peace and not heed rumours. The Tripura police too had tweeted on Thursday that no mosque was burnt during Tuesday’s protest rally and the photograph being shared on social media of a burning or damaged mosque were fakes. Prohibitory orders under Section 144 CrPC has been promulgated at Panisagar and neighbouring Dharmanagar sub-divisions following the incident at Chamtilla area in North Tripura district, it said. PTI JOY KK KK KK

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