In yet another instance of using rape and the facade of a kangaroo court being set up as a ploy to settle political score in Bengal, a young girl of class 10 belonging to the scheduled caste was found dead with her clothes torn beside the railway tracks in Dhupguri in Bengal's Jalpaiguri district.
The girl was last seen on Monday night pleading for the life of her father, a poor farmer who had been dragged to a 'Salishi Sabha' or a reconciliation meeting convened by local Trinamool Congress leaders.
The farmer was being beaten up mercilessly to teach him a lesson for failing to pay up rentals for a power tiller.
Trinamool Congress councillor Namita Ray's effort to call the meeting to settle the issue now appears to be a ploy to take on the farmer, widely known to be a supporter of the CPI(M), who, on several ocassions had run-ins with his Trinamool supporter and neighbour Anil Burman.
During the sham meeting, justice was handed out quickly, the girl's father being fined Rs40,000 of which 10% was demanded immediately.
After a futile effort trying to reason with the Trinamool leaders, including Namita's husband Chandrakanta, the girl was hurriedly escorted away by a relative.
That's the last time her family saw of her; and next morning her body was recovered not far away from the place of the meeting.
"During the meeting, she was threatened with dire consequences. We believe she was raped, killed and then her body dumped near the railway tracks," Mojen Roy, the girl's uncle said.
The GRP has filed a case and two people have been arrested so far while the girl's father has lodged an FIR against 13.
Jalpaiguri SP Kunal Agarwal said it could also be a case of suicide and that the police is yet to find any link between the meeting and subsequent events leading to the death of the girl.
The body has been sent for post-mortem, additional superintendent of police James Kujur said.
District Trinamool Congress president Sourav Chakrabarty tried to brush aside the involvement of Trinamool Congress in the incident saying there was no need to give a "political colour" to it.