Mamata launches satyagraha to demand return of 400 acres land

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Singur, Aug 24 (UNI) Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee today launched an indefinite satyagraha here to demand return of the 400 acres land, 'forcibly acquired' for the Tata Motors small car project, to the 'unwilling farmers'.

Thousands of agitators have been assembling at Ratanpur crossing of National Highway two since this morning to attend a public meeting organised by the Trinamool Congress, spearheading the movement against the Tata Motors small car project.

Besides the Trinamool leader, Samajwadi Party general secretary Amar Singh, SUCI leader Manik Mukherjee, leaders of the West Bengal unit of the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha and social activist Medha Patkar had already arrived at the venue.

About 21 temporary platforms had been erected from Shahanapara of Gopalnagar to Joy Molla, over a distance of three km, for staging the dharna.

Police had meanwhile, been diverting all the vehicles passing through NH two, the arterial road that connects Bardhaman to Kolkata.

Huge police contingents had been deployed throughout the area as well as around the Tata Motors factory to prevent any untoward incident.

The public meeting was peaceful so far with tight security arrangements in place.

SP (Hooghly) Rajiv Mishra said while the agitators would be barred from entering the project site, any attempt to cause disturbance in the adjancent areas would be thwarted. The number of police forces had also been raised to 2,500 from 900, he added.

Mr Mishra said police forces had also been brought from neighbouring districts like Burdwan, 24 Parganas and Birbhum.

While tight security arrangements had been made from Dankuni to Singur on NH two, plainclothes police personnel had also been posted, according to the SP.

Earlier, the Trinamool chief had announced to go for an indefinite dharna at Singur to demand return of the 'forcibly acquired' land to the farmers.

UNI XC DPM RP AS1539

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