NAPM demands PM's intervention in Nandigram

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Mumbai, Nov 8 (UNI) A city-based voluntary organisation today strongly condemned the violent attack on human rights activist Medha Patkar and others by anti-social elemnets at Nandigram in West Bengal and demanded intervention of the President, Prime Minister and Union Home Minister to force the Buddhadeb Bhattacharya-led CPM government in the state to lift the seige there.

In a strongly-worded statement here, the National Alliance of Peoples' Movement (NAPM), a non-political organisation working for the landless and marginal farmers and other poor sections of the society, has strongly condemned the violent attack on Patkar and also demanded the intervention of the President, Prime Minister and Union Home Minister to force West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharya to lift the seige in violence-ridden Nandigram.

It may be recalled that Patkar and other activists were attacked allegedly by the CPM cadre when the rights' activist was marching towards Nandigram.

''We condemn the attitude of the police who behaved as onlookers and were totally indifferent towards such violent acts by the CPM cadre, who were shouting slogans and carrying red flags while breaking cars and beating people. All this was done only to stop Ms Patkar and other activists from entering Nandigram,'' the statement said.

Ms Patkar was invited by the people of Nandigram after a spate of violence and killing in the area.

Folliwng the attack, Ms Patkar along with many activists, including Anuradha Talwar of NTUI, are sitting on satayagraha on the highway towards Nandigram.

Coming down heavily on the CPM, the statement questioned the CPM as to what made the Bhattacharya government prevent Ms Patkar and others entry in Nandigram when its activists were working hand-in-hand with the red flag on several issues in other states.

Accusing the government of being in cahoot with the 'goons', the statment said it was ironical that the police force chose to remain silent during the attack.

The statement did not spare even the Congress Party and questioned its silence over the continous brutalities by the state government against the helpless farmers.

''On one hand, CPM talks about farmers' and marginalized people's rights, but on the other, it hinders the process of struggle through severe state repression. The democratic spaces in West Bengal have almost disappeared, the statement alleged.

The NAPM also demanded investigation in the killings and take immediate and appropriate action against the people involved in this violent attack and also against the police who despite being present, did nothing to protect.

The organisation has also demanded that an all-party delgation of Members of Parliament should visit the incident spot and carry out its investigation.


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