Mamata pays homage to Nandigram martyrs
Kolkata: Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday paid homage to those who had been gunned down in Nandigram on this day 10 years ago.
The erstwhile Left Front government under Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee had issued a notice to acquire land to set up a chemical hub under Special Economic Zone to be developed by Indonesia-based Salim Group. When the villagers resisted, the police opened fire killing 14 people on the spot while another 70 people were wounded. Along with police force, CPI(M) cadres entered the villages and tortured women and even children were not spared. Trinamool Congress had then alleged that at least 50 people were killed on the spot in police firing.
Nandigram marked the beginning of the fall of CPI(M) government. The peasants' movement reached its height under Mamata Banerjee. Intellectuals like Mahashweta Devi, theatre personalities like Bibhas Chakraborty and Shaoali Mitra and others supported Banerjee and stood by her side. Following pressure from the Opposition, the then Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee said that he did not know about the police firing. However, the then Home Secretary Prasad Ranjan Roy told the journalists in a press conference that Bhattacharjee was informed about the firing. As a result of this, Roy was transferred to the higher education department from where he retired.
Banerjee on Friday tweeted in Bengali: "Today is Nandigram divas. On this day, 10 years ago, anti-socials associated with CPI(M) had inflicted inhuman torture on the
people of Nandigram and it is still fresh in our memory. Along with the martyrs of Nandigram we remember those martyrs who lost their lives due to the torture by CPI(M)-backed anti-socials in Singur, Netai, Nanur and Keshpur."