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Buddha warns of Maoist attempts to re-enter Nandigram
March 04, 2008 15:32 IST
West Bengal chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee on Tuesday warned the people that the Maoists driven out of Nandigram [Images] following violence in 2007, were trying to re-enter the area and were taking training in the state and in contiguous Jharkhand.
On a visit to Nandigram in East Midnapur district for the second time in two months after fresh eruption of violence involving rival political groups on Sunday, the chief minister said that the government had information that the Maoists were taking training in Ghatshila in Jharkhand and in Jhargram in West Bengal.
"Be careful of the Maoists. They are bound to create trouble. They have come to Nandigram in groups. They will make an attempt to return. We have information that they are taking training in Jharkhand and also in Jhargram and Ghatsila areas in West Bengal. They only kill people," Bhattacherjee said after distributing land ownership documents to some families in Nandigram Block-1.
Appealing to all the parties, including the Communist Party of India-Marxist and Trinamool Congress, for peace in Nandigram, Bhattacherjee said that the immediate priority was to take up development works which had remained stalled for one year owing to continued violence.
"We want peace. Forget what had happened here. Erase it from your mind," he said.
This was Bhattacherjee's second visit to Nandigram. He had last visited the area on December 26, 2007.
The visit came in the backdrop of clashes between the supporters of the Trinamool Congress-led Bhumi Ucched Committee, spearheading an anti-SEZ campaign, and the CPI-M.
The distribution of strips of land to landless farmers comes ahead of the impending panchayat elections in the state.
Reiterating that his government had made a mistake in trying to set up a chemical hub at Nandigram, the chief minister said, "The lesson we have learnt from Nandigram is that there cannot be any industry over the people's tears".
"It was unfortunate that we could not make people understand that it would be beneficial for them if industry was set up at Nandigram," he said.
The chemical hub, he said, would come up at Nayachar Island where 18,000 people, including those from Nandigram, would get employment.
He said that many industrial units were coming up in Siliguri, Durgapur and Asansol and land for those industries was taken without causing any problem to anyone. "More industries, including steel, cement, chemicals etc, are to be set up as the people want jobs".
The farmers, he said, were earning a very good price by exporting flowers from East Midnapore district.
Bhattacharjee sought to dispel rumours that the land which was distributed, would be taken back after the coming panchayat election. "Don't believe this. I have come to give you land and not to take it away," he said.
Bhattacharjee, who distributed deeds of land to five families, said that 1,483 families would get such deeds.
Coverage: Violence rocks Nandigram