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Home > News > Report

Nandigram: CPI-M claims exhumed bodies are of party loyalists

Indrani Roy Mitra in Nandigram | December 07, 2007 19:46 IST

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Several skeletons were recovered from a field in and around Khejuri near Nandigram [Images] on Friday. The residents said the skeletons are of people who were named 'missing' in the police's general diary. However, no skulls were recovered.

The skeletons and bones have been sent to the Central Forensic Laboratory for identification. According to the Crime Investigation Department, DNA tests will also be needed to ascertain the identity of the deceased.

There was no witness to provide clear leads about the incidents that occurred. However, an anonymous letter was earlier sent to the Central Reserve Police Force personnel deployed in the area stating that unidentified bodies were burned by Communist Party of India-Marxist activists in the presence of their party leaders. The letter added and that some bodies may be found in the area.

On Thursday some CPI-M party loyalists claimed that the bodies were those of their party members. They claimed their people were killed in a bomb attack by Trinamool Congress activists while they were taking refuge in a camp in Nandigram in November.

But when this correspondent and other reporters tried questioning the CPI-M activists, inconsistency marred their statements and no concrete proof was given.

One woman claimed her husband's body could not be traced after a post mortem was conducted. But she could not provide concrete information when she was asked why she did not inquire about it or file the necessary complaints.

According to Kirity Roy, spokesperson for the Banglar Manabadhikar Suraksha Mancha, a human rights organisation, Hindu tradition suggests that bodies of the deceased be burned, whereas Muslim tradition requires bodies to be buried. But he said that no religion requires bodies to be burned and then buried. This, he added, was a clear indication of fowl play.

The organisation has put forth a list of queries to the police and the CID. These include immediate identification of the skeletons and bodies, quick detection of the skulls, conducting a search for missing persons registered in the police's general diary, and an explanation from the ruling government regarding the incident.

The BMSM has also asked for compensation for the next-of-kin of those deceased and intervention of the Centre to ensure there is no violence of this magnitude in and around Nandigram in the future.

According to Roy, the Central Bureau of Investigation should take into account the CPI-M activists' 'horrid' claims that skeletons exhumed belonged to their loyalists, adding that it was nothing but the CPI-M's attempt to hoodwink investigators.

Interestingly, the moment the police came to know about the exhumed skeletons, CPI-M loyalists appeared on the scene and claimed that the bodies belonged to their people.

"Isn't this hint enough that the police are leaking information to CPI-M loyalists so that they can paint a picture to suit their purpose?" Roy asked.