Saturday, May 10, 2008

Fear stalks Nandigram

Intellectuals barred and armed police rule the roost.

Ahead of panchayat polls on Sunday, fear stalks villages in Nandigram with not a soul to be seen mile after mile. Deserted or padlocked houses and empty fields greet a visitor at Sonachura, Gokulnagar, Adhikaripara, Mahespur and other areas.

The marxist party had mobilised a 'red brigade' to terrorise opposition supporters, TC chief Mamata Banerjee said "CPI(Marxist) will resort to ruthless suppression of the people's verdict in Nandigram."

West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacherjee, had promised that the panchayat elections would be free and fair. Banerjee questioned how this could be possible when armed CPI(Marxist) cadre were attacking people and the police were remaining inactive. She claimed that after winning the election with 'brute force' in Nandigram, the CPI(M) would set up the chemical hub there and claim that people are in its favour.

IMO: Elsewhere these SEZs look like energy wasteful hellholes.

Banerjee said she had informed Congress president Sonia Gandhi, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Union Home minister Shivraj Patil about the situation and urged them the state government should be told to adhere to 'raj dharma'.

On the police stopping film director Aparna Sen and other artists and intellectuals in Howrah district from going to Nandigram, she said it was deplorable. Armed cadre have free run in Nandigram, why should intellectuals be barred from going there?" the TC chief asked.

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