New video claims 70 women received money to take part in Sandeshkhali protest

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Kolkata: In a purported video that surfaced from Sandeshkhali, a local BJP leader was heard saying that over 70 women had received Rs 2,000 each for taking part in protests against local TMC satrap Shahjahan Sheikh and his aides who were accused of sexual assault and land grab.


In the video, lasting over 45 minutes, a man resembling Sandeshkhali mandal president Gangadhar Kayal told this to the questioner. It was Kayal who had earlier said in another purported clip, the first in a series in the past week, that the rape allegations were “staged”.


PTI did not independently verify the authenticity of the videos.

In the latest tape that surfaced on Saturday night, Kayal was heard saying that 70 women got Rs 2,000 each for taking part in protests against Sheikh who was arrested and later suspended by the police.

"We will need Rs 2.5 lakh in cash for 50 booths where 30 per cent of protesters would be women. We have to keep the SC, ST and OBC people here in good humour by paying them satisfactorily. In any situation, women will form the front row confronting the police," he said in the video.


Kayal could not be contacted, but the BJP has dubbed the videos as fake.

TMC spokesperson Riju Dutta said, "The truth of the BJP's fake narrative on Sandeshkhali is tumbling out of the closet." Multiple purported videos of Sandeshkhali women have surfaced and shared by the TMC in the past few days.

In the first such videotape that emerged on May 4, Kayal was heard saying that the “staged” protests were lodged at the behest of Leader of the Opposition, Suvendu Adhikari, who was behind the “whole conspiracy”.


The second video was about women, who had earlier filed rape complaints, claiming that they were made to sign a blank paper by the BJP leaders and coerced to go to the police station.

In another clip, BJP candidate from Basirhat constituency and Sandeshkhali protestor Rekha Patra claimed that she “doesn’t know the rape survivors who were taken to Delhi to meet the President.”

The TMC has already moved the Election Commission against National Commission for Women chairperson Rekha Sharma accusing her that she had misused her official position by allegedly telling some of the women in Sandeshkhali to lodge rape complaints against TMC leaders in the area.

“The TMC is using fake videos to change the narrative ahead of the polls. The TMC has the least regard for NCW or the dignity of the women of Sandeshkhali. All the videos released are fake and doctored,” BJP state spokesperson Samik Bhattacharya said.

The riverine Sandeshkhali area — situated on the borders of the Sundarbans, about 100 kilometres from Kolkata — had been on the boil in February with protests over allegations of sexual abuse and land grab against now arrested TMC leader Shajahan Sheikh and his supporters.