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Bengal Governor vs Mamata govt again over '223 rape cases in August' claim

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Kolkata, Oct 07: The Raj Bhavan and the TMC government Tuesday crossed swords over statistics of rapes and kidnappings in West Bengal with the state home department questioning the authenticity of the figures stated by Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar.

Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar and CM Mamata Banerjee

The governor, who has been at loggerheads with the state government over a range of issues, Tuesday urged Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to put law and order in place before "attending flames elsewhere" and tweeted figures of rapes and kidnappings in the state in August this year.

The state home department, which is led by Banerjee herself, was prompt to refute the allegations as "baseless and ill-founded" and not based on any official report.

"Rapes-223 and Kidnappings-639 @MamataOfficial in August 2020 as per official reports indicate worrisome state of crime against women - a cause of concern.

Time to douse fire under feet and put law and order in place @WBPolice @KolkataPolice before attending flames elsewhere," Dhankhar said on Twitter.

Bengal Governor accuses Mamata of ignoring 'urgent 10:47pm message'

"Rajbhavan dissemination of WB "statistics" on rape and kidnapping is not based on any official report, data, or information.

Allegations are baseless, ill-founded, and misguiding: totally incongruous with authentic facts and figures," the home department tweeted.

Dhankhar was quick to express his displeasure and asked that the tweets by the state home department be withdrawn.

Those responsible "for such outrageously incorrect assertions to run down a constitutional office will not be without consequences," he warned.

"Stunned @MamataOfficial terrible misrepresentation.

Must apologetically withdraw and make amends.

Statistics of Rapes-223 and Kidnappings-639 in August 2020 emanate from authentic reports officially sent to me from each of Divisions.

All figures after due diligence," he said in a tweet.

The governor slammed the state director general of police and the state home department for showing "defiance to directive to apprise on nose-diving law and order and now such untruths".

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    "Both CS (chief secretary) and ACS (additional chief secretary) Home @MamataOfficial have been advised to forthwith make amends as such stance is unexpected - must forthrightly withdraw input.

    How ironical- Both DGP @WBPolice and ACS Home show defiance to directive to apprise on nosediving law and order and now such untruths," he said.

    "Those responsible for such outrageously incorrect assertions to run down a constitutional office will not be without consequences.

    Such stance in public interest cannot be countenanced.

    "Action will surely ensue.

    Hope they are as quick with truth as with falsehood and make amends.

    " he said in a series of tweets.

    The faceoff between the Raj Bhavan and the TMC government triggered a war of words between the ruling TMC and the opposition BJP.

    The saffron party accused the government of insulting the constitutional head of the state.

    "In no other state, you will see the state government is busy insulting the governor.

    The way the governor has been insulted by the TMC government and its ministers is unprecedented," state BJP president Dilip Ghosh said.

    Senior TMC leader and spokesperson Saugato Roy said the Governor "is not acting in a way he should keeping in mind the high office he holds.

    "By tweeting against the state government and by making political remarks he (governor) has repeatedly exposed himself," Roy added.

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