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Nandigram:Bid for unity on CRPF

Posted by Indian Vanguard on November 7, 2007

OUR BUREAU Nov. 5: The chief minister today hinted that he would like to build a consensus, particularly within the Left Front, before sending central forces to Nandigram. A front meeting has been called on Wednesday. The RSP had opposed the deployment of the CRPF.

The CPI and the Forward Bloc had preferred “resumption of dialogue” with Mamata Banerjee. However, addressing a rally in Howrah, Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee accused the Trinamul Congress of practising “dangerous politics” and appeared to be preparing ground for a crackdown. “Trinamul is espousing a dangerous, terrible politics in Nandigram…. But I don’t want to do anything forcibly. I’m trying my best to convince the Trinamul leadership to shun the path of violence,” he said.

“Those rendered homeless by the violence should be allowed to return and the government and panchayats to resume their development work. But they have refused to see reason. Can we let some people continue to rule at gunpoint?” Bhattacharjee asked. The Opposition, he added, was playing into the hands of Naxalites.

The home secretary said in Calcutta all warring groups in Nandigram were in possession of arms and that they were being helped by outsiders. Preparing the ground for a crackdown, Bhattacharjee made distinction between the “poor villagers who have misunderstood the Left and joined Trinamul” and the “armed Naxalites active there”. The “extremists’ presence” could be the official reason for paramilitary action in the war zone. A committee led by intelligence branch additional director-general Sujit Sarkar has been set up to decide the deployment of central forces and the police.

Heavy gunfire was exchanged at various places in Nandigram tonight. The chief minister said peace was an absolute imperative for industrialisation. “All our efforts would come to a naught if the fire spreads. Are we trying to set up new industries and vocational training colleges for only our party workers?” Bhattacharjee asked, in a bid to isolate Trinamul as an anti-development force. A section of Left supporters had accused him of being ruthless in pursuing his mission of development. The chief minister today urged CPM workers to win over those “standing mid-way between the Left and Trinamul”.


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