Saturday, 25 October 2014
Madhumita Banerjee covers up trustees’ misdeeds
Madhumita Banerjee, a Punjabi woman married to a Bengali, runs an NGO called “Disha” in Pondicherry. She is a very close associate of the trustees and Matriprasad. As she is associated with various political groups in Pondicherry, trustees have always entertained her to get their work done. The trustees used her well in our case also with regard to the investigation conducted by National Women Commission.
I met her for the first time on 25.06.2006 when she visited Ambabhikshu House to canvass for her party during Pondicherry Municipal Election.
It was a Sunday evening at about 6.45pm. She along with her friend knocked at my door asking to vote for them. Just for fun I began chitchatting with Madhumita and asked her what her party would do if it won. Her reply shocked me. She said that she has always helped ashramites and the trustees. She informed me that she was the go-between person between the trustees and the State women Commission (SCW) and the National Women Commission (NCW) in the complaint given by the five sisters.
Wow! This was a revelation to me so I goaded her further for information. I asked her what she knew about the five sisters’ case and how she had helped the trustees.
Her idea about our complaint to NCW was vague as she had only a cursory glance of the file which had been submitted by our lawyer at the Chief Secretariat, Pondicherry, to Mrs. Poornima Advani on 5/10/2004 in the morning. But promptly she had called the trustee Dr. Dilip Kumar Dutta and handed over a copy of this file to Matriprasad.
She also boasted to me that she had visited Delhi with the Chairperson of State Women Commission Mrs. Kamalini to convince the chairperson of National Women Commission Mrs. Poornima Advani that the Ashram was free from all vices. She also commented that these 5 sisters were psycho-cases.
After she had finished her story, I asked her whether I appeared to be a psycho-case. She replied “NO”. Then I showed her the original pornographic cartoons received by me. Only then she realized her faux pas and asked me who I was. When I told her that I was one of the five sisters whose name she did not even know and much less about our sexual harassment, she turned white. By then my third sister also joined me.
Since Madhumita Bannerjee was caught red-handed, without apologizing to us she hurriedly left Ambabhikshu House with her political friend without visiting any other rooms. But on a parting note she said that men in the Ashram were bad and abusive.
After several months, Madhumita Banerjee, who had now become richer by trustees’ grace, threatened me openly with kidnap, assault and even rape. She categorically advised me to keep quiet about her dirty role. What a request!
I reported her insulting and obnoxious behavior as well as her threat to me to one of her political colleagues, who heard me out sympathetically. This colleague approached and briefed the senior politician, who in turn took Madhumita Bannerjee to task. Only then she toned down since she had been given the choice to either quit the party or continue with her behavior.
What a nightmare trustees had created for everyone!