Amid the ongoing political battle between the ruling Mamata Banerjee-led TMC and the BJP over Durga idol immersion, the Calcutta High Court today asked as to why both Hindu and Muslim communities cannot celebrate together, according to ANI. “Why can’t two communities celebrate together?” the court asked. The High Court asked this while hearing a petition challenging West Bengal government’s decision to ban the immersion of Durga idols on Dashami last month.
“When you (state govt) are firm there is communal harmony in the state, why are you creating communal distinction between the two? Let them live in harmony do not create a line between them. Let them live together,” the court observed.
Banerjee had clarified that the decision would be effective only for a period of 24 hours. “This year Durga Puja and Muharram fall on the same day. Except for 24 hour period on Muharram day, immersion can take place on October 2, 3 and 4,” The Indian Express had quoted her as saying on August 23.
The decision, however, didn’t go down well with the BJP, which approached the court against the decision.
The clash of Dashami and Muharram on the same day has apparently turned into a new battleground between the ruling TMC and the aspiring BJP in the state.
On 16 September, Banerjee had warned RSS and its affiliate organisations like Bajrang Dal and Vishwa Hindu Parishad against disturbing peace during the Durga Puja. She had asked these organisations not to “play with fire”. Banerjee also said the state government had not put any curb on Vijaya Dashami celebrations. “There is misinformation campaign by certain outfits that we are stopping Vijaya Dashami celebrations at puja pandals and households,” IE reported her as saying.
On Friday last, the state government had told the Calcutta High Court that the immersion will be allowed till 10 pm on September 30 and not on October 1 in view of Muharram. It will be permitted again on October 2.