Millennium Post

Singur: Mamata to handover land to farmers today

The highly fertile land of Singur, which was given away to Tata Motors’ Nano project by the Left Front government, will return to  farming as Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee will on Thursday begin formal handover of Singur land to farmers. She will also kick-start farming at the land by sowing seeds.

The process to give physical possession of the land to around 4,000 farmers in Singur would start on Thursday with Chief Minister handing over plots to 30 farmers. Sources said Banerjee would join the farmers on their plots and would sow seeds after the land handing-over ceremony. She would also inaugurate one of the 66 deep tube well pumps that the state government has planned to install for proper irrigation in the 997 acre of farm land.

In her last visit to Singur on September 14, a few days after the Supreme Court verdict in favour of the farmers, Banerjee had distributed deed of rights of the land to respective owners. The task of converting the land into cultivable form began within a day of the SC order.

The CM had set October 21 as the deadline to complete the task of conversion of land to cultivable form but the work has been completed a few days ahead of the deadline.

A stage has been set up in each of the five mouzas — Gopalnagar, Khasherbheri, Beraberi, Singherbheri and Bajemelia. The Chief Minister’s programme will be held in Gopalnagar mouza. She will be handing over land to farmers who are have their plots in the same mouza.

There will be cultural programmes in rest of the four mouzas. The state agriculture department will distribute brinjal seeds and fertilizers among the farmers.

Thousands of people from different parts of the state are expected to come to Singur on Thursday to witness the historical moment when the Chief Minister hands over the plots to farmers.

The fight against “illegal” and “forceful” acquisition of land started on May 25, 2006 with hundreds of farmers staging a demonstration against Buddhadeb Bhattacharya’s government. On September 23 in 2008, Ratan Tata announced that the Tata Motors had decided to move the Nano project out of Bengal, and a legal battle for the ownership of the land began. 

Farmers have been eagerly waiting for the outcome of the legal battle. Manoj Gharami, a farmer, said that they had been waiting for the day since 2006 and they knew that Mamata Banerjee’s government would fight till the end to fulfill its promise of giving back land to the farmers.

People who were involved with the Singur movement including the parents of Tapasi Malik and Rajkumar Bhul will also be present in Thursday’s programme.
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