Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI: The Left parties have condemned the firing and use of force by the police against those protesting land acquisition for the Posco project in Orissa.

In a joint statement, the parties said 40 platoons of armed forces were mobilised to confront the thousands, who have been staging a dharna for the past few months. Alleging that over 100 people, including 60 women, were injured in lathi charge and firing of teargas and rubber bullets, the statement dismissed as “canards” the government claim that some of the protestors threw bombs. “This is a total falsehood.”

The protesters were also against the South Korean company's move to have a captive port — which would have an adverse impact on the Paradeep port — and its plans for captive iron ore mines instead of purchasing ore from the Orissa Mining Corporation.

Posco's proposal to draw water from the Mahanadi Barrage would seriously affect the irrigation system and damage the ecological balance in the region. But “ignoring all these concerns, the Centre and the State governments have been backing Posco in its efforts.” said the statement issued by the Communist Party of India (Marxist), the CPI, the Revolutionary Socialist Party and the All-India Forward Bloc.

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