State Government told to provide relief to the affected
Situation still tense but under controlCentre promises all help to the State
NEW DELHI: Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil on Friday said that instead of sitting in judgment on the turn of events in Nandigram, efforts should be made to defuse the situation.
Making a statement in the Lok Sabha on the violence in Nandigram on Wednesday, he said the Centre has asked the West Bengal Government to provide relief to the affected families and talk to all concerned to assuage their feelings and restore peace and normality.
As Mr. Patil read out the statement received from the West Bengal Ministry of Home Affairs, members of his own party from West Bengal joined the Opposition in protesting against the manner in which the State Government covered up the facts. Fourteen people died in the police firing till 8 p.m. on March 14. Besides, there were 75 injured, including 12 policemen. Some of the agitators were injured by the bombs that they were hurling, he said.
The Minister said there was still tension in Nandigram, but the situation was under control. ``Police camps have been set up in the disturbed area. Senior police officers are also camping and making efforts to restore peace.''
He said the Central Government has promised all help to the State Government to restore peace and normality. The State Government has been asked to take all possible preventive steps to defuse the situation.As for Wednesday's violence, Mr. Patil told the House that the police entered Nandigram where a mega-chemical hub and multi-product Special Economic Zone was proposed to be set up to end the ``lawless situation'' prevailing there since the violence that erupted in early January.
It was also decided that the damaged roads, bridges and culverts should be repaired without any further delay and police should take up the investigations of the murder of a policeman in early February.