Industrialisation not at the cost of lives: Mamata


Kolkata : Trinamool Congress leader Mamata Banerjee Monday said though Singur and Nandigram were separate issues and the process of land acquisition adopted by the West Bengal government for industrial projects was unacceptable.

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Addressing a rally in Haldia, close to Nandigram, in East Midnapore distict, Banerjee said "industrialisation cannot happen at the cost of lives of the people".

She said the government had failed to provide basic necessities of life to the people in Nandigram and instead had asked for land for projects.

"We are not opposed to industrialisation but to the process of acquisition adopted by the government for industrial projects. It is the duty of the government to ensure development of people. Instead of providing funds for development, the government is displacing people without paying adequate compensation," Banerjee said.

The Trinamool leader said the state government should provide funds for irrigation for agricultural growth in the area.

She demanded compensation for next of kin of those killed and injured in the March 14 police firing that claimed 14 lives and left hundreds injured.

Banerjee also demanded that the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) probe the Nandigram incident, as investigation was stopped without any "comprehensive conclusion."

"We want justice for the mass killing on March 14," she said.

Trinamool supporters in tens of thousands attended the rally.

The rally in the port and industrial town assumes importance since the state government may choose the place for the proposed chemical hub by Salim Group following the decision to scrap the project in Nandigram where at least 21 people have died in spiralling violence since January over the project.

Meanwhile, for the second successive day, about 200 farmers led by Trinamool Congress spearheaded anti-land acquisition group tried to damage the under-construction boundary wall of the upcoming Tata Motors small car factory in Singur, forcing police to teargas and baton-charge the mobs.