Hakim does a Didi: Man detained briefly for questioning him
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Urban Development Minister Firhad Hakim followed the footsteps of his leader and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Sunday quite literally when he got a homeless slum dweller detained by the police after being asked why the CM did not visit Maheshtala to meet the 3,000 slum dwellers who have been rendered homeless by a fire on Saturday morning.
Pratap Naskar was detained by the police for over three hours. He was released after it was found that he was a local Trinamool Congress supporter.
The Sunday's incident reminded about the arrest of one Shiladitya Chowdhury in Jhargram after he asked Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee at a public meeting about the steps she was taking to help farmers. He was labeled a Maoist and arrested on charges of trying to assault the CM. Later, he was freed.
CPM slammed the arrest of Naskar saying the democratic rights of the people are being taken away by the Trinamool government as the common people are being threatened against speaking the truth. "People are afraid to speak the truth. It's ridiculous to detain someone as he had asked the minister why Mamata Banerjee did not visit the affected site. We have seen such incidences in the past, where police arrested a person when he asked the Chief Minister some tough questions at a public meeting," said Sujan Bhattacharya , CPM leader from South 24-Parganas.
The resident of the slum complained that till now the state government has not provide them alternate shelter, and they are now being forced to stay in open fields.
Interestingly, slum dwellers have accused local Trinamool councillor and the civic body chief of vested interest in the six-acre plot where 700 shanties existed. They have accused them of sabotage as the plot is in demand in the realty sector.