Police could not attempt to remove equipment without informing government, says CPI(M)

The Communist Party of India (Marxist) and the Congress on Thursday alleged that West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was misleading the people on the events that led to violence at Loba village in the Dubrajpur area of Birbhum district on Tuesday.

The attempts by the district police to take possession of an earthmoving equipment of DVC Emta Coal Mines, which had been in the control of villagers since December 2011, resulted in violence. Twenty-seven police personnel and several villagers were injured.

“A Superintendent of Police cannot take such action without informing the government… The comments made by the Chief Minister [that she was not aware of the developments] are only to suppress the truth,” Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly Surya Kanta Mishra told The Hindu.

He alleged that the Trinamool Congress was involved in the movement of the villagers against land acquisition and after a while the villagers, who did not get the desired compensation, got disillusioned with the party.

“We have learnt that Trinamool activists, including local panchayat leaders, were with the police when they tried to take possession of the equipment.”

On Wednesday Ms. Banerjee said the State administration was not aware of the police action and claimed that it was done locally.

PCC president Pradip Bhattacharya, however, said not only Ms. Banerjee and another Minister aware of the police action but they had also given consent for it. “Whatever Ms. Banerjee and Industries Minister Partha Chatterjee is saying is only to mislead the people.”

Mr. Bhattacharya challenged the government to call for a CBI probe into the incident, adding the administrative inquiry ordered by Ms. Banerjee was only eyewash.

“The Dubrajpur incident is similar to what happened at Nandigram [in 2007],” Mr. Bhattacharya said, adding the Trinamool now did what the CPI(M) had done in the past.

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