Yechury takes BJP to task on Maoists

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Shimla, Dec 18 (UNI) The CPM today questioned the BJP over its opposition to the tough measures taken by the West Bengal Government against the Maoists at Nandigram in West Bengal where they had set up a ''liberated zone''.

Addressing mediapersons here, party's politburo member Sitaram Yechury said even though the Prime Minister had declared Maoists one of the biggest threats to the country, the BJP was continuing to oppose the tough measures taken by the West Bengal Government in reining them.

He said Home Minister Shivraj Patil was on record having said in Parliament that the violence in the state was due to the Maoists who had barricaded the village and prevented the return of the villagers to their houses after declaring it a liberated zone.

The violence that followed thereafter in Nandigram was due to them for which the BJP was criticising the CPM, he added.

Mr Yechury said 34 party cadres were killed in the violence even after the state government had declared on February nine, 2007, that the land would not be acquired for the setting up of a special economic zone (SEZ).

However, the situation in the BJP ruled state in Chattisgarh was far worse where the Maoists control half of the state as proved by the escape of 299 jail inmates yesterday.

In all, 110 Maoists out of a total of 299 inmates, escaped after the jail break on which the BJP was yet to say anything, he added.

Seeking votes for the party candidate from Shimla constituency, Sanjay Chauhan, he said the two main parties had sidelined the issues of water, electricity and price rise.

The BJP and the Congress are raking up issues like contents of ''hard disc'' and ''audio CD'', since it would be difficult for them to explain their failures on providing even the basic facilities, he said He also expressed his opposition to FDI in retail, merger of banks and privatisaion of pension funds.

UNI

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