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The barbaric gang-rape of a girl in West Bengal's Birbhum district allegedly on the orders of a khap panchayat was referred to as a 'sad' incident by Mamata Banerjee's ruling Trinamool Congress.
Trinamool called for 'strictest' punishment to be given to the culprits "Government is firm and is for strictest action against the culprits for committing this heinous crime. All the accused involved in the gang-rape have been arrested by the police and an inquiry is on," TMC general secretary Mukul Roy said.
Mukul Roy, a close aide of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, was in Darjeeling to participate in programmes to mark Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose's birth anniversary.
He said the party and the government were for harshest possible measures to deal with the cases of rape.
"It is a social malaise and we shall combat it politically, socially and administratively," Roy, a Rajya Sabha member said.
All the 13 accused in the gang-rape in Birbhum, including the village head who had allegedly ordered it, were arrested yesterday and were sent to jail custody for 14 days after they were produced in a court at Bolpur.
The girl was allegedly gang-raped at Labhpur in Birbhum district by 13 people on Tuesday night on the orders of the panchayat as she was in love with a man from another community.