|Rediff India Abroad Home | All the sections|
Buddhadeb scraps Nandigram project
March 28, 2007 21:41 IST
West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee on Wednesday announced the scrapping of a chemical hub in Nandigram and owned responsibility for the lapses of his government, prompting opposition Trinamool Congress to demand his resignation.
Speaking for the first time after the violence in Nandigram that claimed 14 lives, Bhattacharjee told a rally in Kolkata that his government had decided to relocate the chemical hub and was waiting for Centre's communication before announcing its new location within seven days.
"I own up responsibility for the lapses in Nandigram on behalf of the state government. I don't want any more deaths," he said.
Stating that violence over land acquisition and the opposition's role had earned a bad name for the state, Bhattacharjee regretted the Nandigram people's unwillingness for the setting up of a chemical hub which, he claimed, could have changed the economy of the area.
Asking people to shun violence, the chief minister said there should be no clashes and bloodbath for the sake of industry.
"We want development and industrialisation of the state on the basis of our success in agriculture," he said, urging the opposition to uphold the state's interest by supporting the industrialisation process.
Reacting sharply, Trinamool chief Mamata Banerjee demanded his resignation.
"If anyone indulges in killing and says sorry, can the person be excused? If he really owned up and has at least the minimum respect for democracy, he should step down," she demanded.