PM briefed on farmers’ problems in Singur: Amar Singh
NEW DELHI: Samajwadi Party general secretary Amar Singh, along with Trinamool Congress president Mamata Banerjee, on Tuesday met President Pratibha Patil and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to apprise them of the situation at Singur in West Bengal. They demanded that the State government be asked to honour an agreement to return land to farmers who had not accepted compensation for their plots acquired for Tatas’ ancillary unit.
Seeking dismissal of the State government for the “breakdown of a constitutional agreement,” Ms. Banerjee told journalists here that she was not looking for the 600 acres earmarked for Tatas’ Nano project.
“There are many Tatas, anyone can come there. We want the 400 acres acquired for the adjoining ancillary unit returned to farmers who did not want to part with their land and who have not accepted any compensation. The government will have to implement it or go out of power.”
The Trinamool chief said nobody knew why Tatas withdrew from Singur. “They withdrew unilaterally and the government withdrew unilaterally. The Left parties withdrew support to the United Progressive Alliance government over the nuclear agreement, while they themselves failed to honour the agreement on Singur. We will continue to fight this socially, legally and politically.”
Accompanied by leaders of the West Bengal SP and Janata Dal (United), among others, Mr. Amar Singh said at the joint press conference that they briefed the Prime Minister and the President on the Singur farmers facing tough time due to the policies of the State government. “No jan andolan can run for so long unless the people are with it.”
On Mr. Ratan Tata’s remarks after he shifted the Nano project to Gujarat, Mr. Amar Singh said: “To say Ms. Mamata, who was fighting for the poor, was the bad M and Mr. Modi [Gujarat Chief Minister] was the good M was a personal attack on Ms. Banerjee for which she should sue him. Mr. Tata should decide whether he wants to be an industrialist or politician.”
Mr. Singh said he would raise the issue of special economic zones with the Congress leadership when the UPA-SP Coordination Committee met here on Friday.