Professor Ambikesh Mahapatra, one of the two persons whom the West Bengal Human Rights Commission (WBHRC) has recommended for a compensation of Rs. 50,000 in connection with their arrests for e-mailing graphics directed at Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and some of her party colleagues in April said here on Tuesday that he would continue to circulate cartoons that interest him.
“Cartoons cannot be and should not be banned by any law. Although I am not a cartoonist I am intrigued by cartoons and in future will continue to circulate e-mails containing cartoons that interest me”, Prof Mahapatra told The Hindu here on Tuesday. He also said that he was being invited by organisations that promote cartoons following his arrest. “Cartoons are a medium to express humour,” Professor Mahapatra added.
Ms. Banerjee had taken strong exception to the graphics depicting her that Professor Mahapatra had circulated through e-mail and described it as “character assassination”.
The WBHRC in its recommendations in regard to the arrest of Professor Mahapatra and his neighbour Subrata Sengupta, had on Monday observed that “even during Emergency (1975-77) when pre-censorship of the Press was imposed, pre-censorship of cartoons was lifted after the first three months”.