CPM supporters ''manhandle'' Medha Patkar near Nandigram

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Tamluk, Midnapur, Nov 8 (UNI) Social activist Medha Patkar and her associates were today allegedly ''manhandled'' by CPI(M) supporters when they were on their way to embattled Nandigram.

Eyewitnesses claimed armed CPI(M) men blocked the way of Ms Patkar and some human rights activists, including Sunanda Sanyal, Sujato Bhadra and Anuradha Talwar on National Highway 41 near Kapasgeria.

''Ms Patkar was dragged out of her car, caught by the neck and manhandled by CPI(M) supporters. No policeman was present in the area,'' an eyewitness said.

Hundreds of partymen reportedly started pounding her car. The media was also not spared. Many mediapersons were beaten up and their cameras broken, the eyewitness added.

''A police van with 4 constables was seen about 100 meters away.

But as soon as the thrashing started it sped away,'' another eyewitness claimed.

Ms Patkar later told reporters, ''The present government has no moral right to stay in power.'' Trinamool Congress leader Mukul Ray and Congress leader Manas Bhunia's cars were also damaged near Chandipur, preventing them from entering Nandigram.

Meanwhile, reports said the BUPC was fighting a ''last ditch battle'' in Adhikarypara and Madhupur today to yield their strongholds in Satengabari, Takapura, Tekhali, Gokulnagar, the eyewitnesses said.

UNI

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