A march in Santiniketan to protest the ‘harassment’ of Amartya Sen

Standing by the side of Nobel laureate economist Amartya Sen in the land dispute, he has been protested through human chain and drama against the ‘eviction threat’.

The ‘Social Dignity Raksha Committee’ marched from the junction adjacent to Amartya Sen’s residence ‘Pratichi’ to Visva Bharati Cooperative Bank in Santiniketan on Friday. Later, Ashrams, alumni and committee members of Visva Bharati protested by performing ‘Raktkaravi’ play on the streets.

Nobel laureate economist Amartya Sen occupies 13 decimal places. With this complaint of Visva Bharati authorities, there was a storm of condemnation at all levels. However, Amartya Sen claims that the land belongs to him as per the will of his late father Ashutosh Sen. Professor Sen has already approached Siuri District Court and Calcutta High Court in this regard. On Thursday, the High Court stayed Visva Bharati’s order to vacate the land.

Despite all this, Amartya Sen is being harassed day after day by calling him ‘land grabber’, ‘land grabber’ etc. People from various organizations have come to stand by him and protest the role of Visva Bharati authorities.

‘Committee for Protection of Social Dignity’ marched from Shiksha Bhavan intersection next to ‘Pratichi’ in protest against Amartya Sen’s eviction warning. Actors, social workers, professors, academics from various districts of the state including Kolkata participated in the human bonding program. Shantiniketan ashram Swapan Ghosh, Kuntal Rudra, Subir Banerjee and others joined the procession. The procession passed through the road in front of the house of worship and ended at Visva Bharati Cooperative Bank. There the theater workers protested by staging ‘Raktkaravi’ play on the street.

Actress Chaiti Ghoshal played the role of Nandini in the play. He said, Shantiniketan has now become Yakshapuri. We artists know how to protest with our style. I think Ranjan’s arrival at Nandini’s Yakshapuri and saying ‘Aay re bhai, ladaye chala’— this need has been created. Because Amartya Sen cannot be disrespected.

Abhijit Chowdhury, the organizer of this program, said there was no other way. The language, the way, the manner in which Amartya Sen has been insulted for days cannot be accepted. So I joined the protest.

Sabujkali Sen, Acting Vice-Chancellor of Visva Bharati, said that the court’s verdict is very appropriate. Amartya Sen was greatly relieved by this.

On behalf of Visva Bharati authority, acting public relations officer Mahua Bandyopadhyay said, “We give dignity to the court.” Magistrate issued Section 145 in front of Amartya Sen’s house. It has not been withdrawn yet. How can so many people gather and program in violation of that clause? Is the law only for Visva Bharati?

Meanwhile, about 70 Bauls, Trinamool activists, and a group of pro-Trinamool intellectuals will sit in protest in front of Amartya Sen’s residence tomorrow on the orders of Mamata Banerjee. Visva Bharati University has approached the administration fearing that due to their position, the peace and order of Visva Bharati University may be disturbed.

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