Congress condemns ‘culture of violence’ in Nandigram


New Delhi : The ruling Congress Saturday lambasted the communist-led West Bengal government, saying it did not allow the law and order machinery to function professionally in the violence-hit Nandigram area.

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The Congress expressed concern over the “grave situation” in Nandigram, where 34 people have been killed since January in repeated clashes between cadres of the state’s ruling Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M)and villagers backed by the opposition.

A resolution at the All India Congress Committee said: “The AICC notes with concern the grave situation in Nandigram where the writ of the state government appears to have ceased to run. The AICC condemns the culture of violence and the cult of armed cadres.”

The resolution said the development in Nandigram was “the natural outcome of a system where the interests of party cadres are placed above the interests of the people at large and the law and order machinery is not allowed to function professionally.”

The CPI-M, which leads a combine of four Left parties in extending an outside support to the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government at the centre, has come under severe criticism for the violence in Nandigram.

According to sources, although a section of Congress leaders was opposed to “strong remarks” against the Left parties, another group wanted the events to be condemned.

The Left, which has been opposing the India-US nuclear deal, Friday allowed the government to go ahead with its negotiations with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to take the deal forward but on the condition that the final draft should be approved by them.