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Peace set to return to Nandigram

February 13, 2007 19:33 IST
Peace could at last return to troubled Nandigram block in East Midnapore district, the scene of protests against a proposed special economic zone, with an all-party peace meeting on Tuesday calling for an end to violence.

Work to repair dug up roads will begin on Wednesday and those who fled their homes due to violence over acquisition of land for the SEZ will be allowed to return to their villages, the meeting resolved.

The meeting, attended by representatives of the CPI-M and Trinamool Congress, decided that roads dug up to prevent the entry of police since early January would be repaired under the supervision of the police and the block development officer.

The meeting, convened by an NGO, was held in the presence of Nandigram's BDO Ashok Sarkar.

Representatives of the CPI-M, CPI, Trinamool Congress, Congress, SUCI, Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind,
Gana Unnayan Samiti and PDS attended the meeting. Copies of the resolutions adopted by it will be sent to the administration.

Chief Minister Budhadev Bhattacharya said two days ago that his government would explain to the people the benefits that will accrue from the SEZ in Nandigram, but if they were not convinced, the government will think of shifting the project from the area.

The district has witnessed violent protests since early January following rumours that large tracts of farm land would be acquired for the SEZ to be set up by Indonesia's Salim Group. Six persons died in violent clashes on January 7 and a intelligence official was killed by a mob exactly a month later.
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