West Bengal has turned into a “killing field” for women with the number of cases of atrocities against women increasing, said Left Front State Committee chairperson Biman Bose here on Sunday. “If the accused in the first four or five cases of rape [after the Trinamool Congress government assumed power in May 2011] were promptly identified and punished under the law, then perhaps such incidents would not have happened,” he said.

Mr. Bose, a Polit Bureau member of the Communist Party of India (Marxist), slammed the State government for “not taking any comprehensive measure to curb such crimes.”

By blaming such occurrences on girls because they “wear short skirts”, leaders of the ruling party were “actually encouraging criminals and shielding them,” he said.

Rubbishing the Trinamool Congress’ allegations against the CPI(M) of indulging in politics over the body of the gang-rape victim who died on December 31 last, he said, “If anyone has indulged in politics over the issue, it is the ruling party.”

“There is no politics here. The CITU [Centre of Indian Trade Unions] helped the victim’s family to get her body. It has done so from a humane perspective,” said Mr. Bose.

As for the police’s alleged attempt to send the victim’s family back to Bihar by “intimidating them”, he said the police did not stand by the victim’s family.

“West Bengal is not a sovereign State. It is a part of India. There is no place for such regionalisms here… can the great heritage of the State be smeared like this?”

Reacting to Trinamool Congress general secretary Mukul Roy’s allegation against the CPI(M) that it was trying to disrupt the peace in the State in a “monstrous way”, Mr. Bose said, “How can drawing attention to incidents of rape become monstrous?”

On the victim’s family’s demand of a Central Bureau of Investigation probe in to the events leading the teenager’s death, he said the Left Front supportedit.

“The Left Front will extend cooperation to the victim’s family whenever they need it,” he added.