Our honourable chief minister Ms Mamata Banerjee has, without a doubt, done a great service to the cartoonist tribe. Can you think of another time when so much newsprint was spent on these people? On how many occasions have cartoonists made it to prime time TV? I can hardly recall any instance when cartoonists have been asked to give their opinion on something as important as Freedom of Speech and Expression. Hence we should all be grateful to our honourable chief minister for coming down heavily on Prof Ambikesh Mahapatra. Well done Madam CM! You have given these neglected people their moment under the sun.
The Left Front government had spoilt us silly by allowing us to read anything and everything that we wanted. And we all know that being spoilt is not healthy. So our honourable chief minister, who is ever so concerned about the welfare of the people of Bengal, decided, very rightly so, that the people or “manush” should be disciplined and not allowed to go astray. They should be told which newspapers to read when they visited their neighbourhood library. As our “mai baap” she of course has the right to determine what is good for us and what is not. Remember she said that newspapers wished by her to be made available to readers at different libraries advocated “free thinking””? Did we ever have such a thoughtful Chief Minister?
How ungrateful of us to call her a “dictator” or a “fascist in the making” or a “lady Hitler”! Renowned political psychologist Professor Asish Nandi was very unjust in suggesting, during a panel discussion on a leading national news channel, that our honourable chief minister needs the help of a shrink!
But our honourable chief minister should not worry. She has her loyal band of hangers-on, the so-called “intellectuals” who are doing every thing in their power to try and defend these “dictatorial” and “fascistic” actions. One particular woman, who is the HOD of the Dept of Journalism and Mass Communication in a leading college in Kolkata and a documentary film maker and also associated with one of the news channels, which critics say is run by chit fund money, went red in the face defending Madam CM, on a national news channel where the anchor was tearing through her arguments. But hats off to her, she held her ground, no matter how preposterous and idiotic she sounded to the rest of the panelists and to her viewers. She showed her allegiance to our honourable chief minister (unlike so many others who are only hatching conspiracies and plotting against the Madam) and unabashedly tried to raze the reputation of one of her own tribe. Kudos to this ” brave , upright , free thinking” professor for not being foolhardy unlike Kabir Suman, Sunanda Sanyal, Mahesweta Devi et al .
The “manush” of West Bengal should realise that our honourable chief minister is a very selfless lady who only thinks about the welfare of her “subjects”. She is working relentlessly to make this state an amalgamation of London, Switzerland and Goa… some kind of a wonderland where professors are put behind bars , college principals are mercilessly beaten up, women are raped, school syllabi are tampered with, political opponents are hacked to death in broad daylight or incarcerated on false charges , poor villagers are made to pay “tola” for having supported the CPI(M), farmers commit suicide because they have not got the price for their produce, upright police officers are transferred for solving complex criminal cases, the Chief Minister barges into the police station to free hoodlums, where marriages between members of different political parties are frowned upon.
Into that heaven of wonderland, my honourable chief minister, let my state awake.