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West Bengal Rights panel orders cartoon row accused be compensated

Press Trust of India Kolkata | Updated on March 12, 2018

Finding fault with the way a professor and his neighbour were arrested for posting online a cartoon allegedly derogatory to Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, the West Bengal Human Rights Commission (WBHRC) has asked the State Government to pay a compensation of Rs 50,000 each to the two persons.

The rights body also recommended departmental proceedings against two police officers.

Chairman of WBHRC Justice Asok Kumar Ganguly and two other members recommended that “the State Government must compensate both Professor Ambikesh Mahapatra and Subrata Sengupta, the two arrestees, for the manner in which they were arrested from their residential complex and detained in the thana in a case which is about non-cognizable offence.”

Mohapatra, a Jadavpur University chemistry professor, and his neighbour Sengupta were accused last April of forwarding the cartoon parodying Satyajit Ray’s evergreen children’s film Sonar Kella through an e-mail which the police claimed amounted to character assassination of the Chief Minister.

“Their compensation is assessed at Rs 50,000 to be paid to each of them by the State Government within a period of six weeks from date,” the order signed by Justice Ganguly and members Justice (retd) N. C. Sil and S. N. Roy said.

Published on August 13, 2012

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