Singur impasse continues, Governor appeals for quick solution

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Singur/Kolkata, Aug 31 (UNI) The stalemate in Singur continued today even as West Bengal Governor Gopalkrishna Gandhi appealed to Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee to solve the problem over the Tata Motors' Nano project through discussions.

As Ms Banerjee's indefinite dharna entered the eighth day today, no work was done in the small car project for the third consecutive day following a decision of the authorities.

Expressing concern at the situation that snowballed over the state's industrial and political scenario, the Governor sent a letter to Ms Banerjee last night requesting her to agree for talks to find out a solution, acceptable to both the Trinamool Congress and the state government.

Meanwhile, addressing the huge gathering of agitators in front of the Tata Motors small car project site at Singur, Ms Banerjee said, ''In response to the Governor's letter to me yesterday, a delegation of my party, led by Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly Partha Chatterjee, has sought an appointment with Mr Gandhi at 1500 hours today.'' She also expressed gratitude to the Governor for his concern on the issue and said the Trinamool delegation would meet the Governor as soon as he granted time.

Leading a forum of 22 outfits and organisations, Ms Banerjee has been on the dharna near the Nano project since August 24 to press for her demand that 400 acres out of the total 997 acres of the project site be returned to farmers.

The agitation virtually laid siege on the small car project and choked the National Highway two running through Singur forcing Tata Motors to declare a temporary shutdown and immobilising thousands of trucks carrying goods.

The Govenor's letter, a copy of which was sent to Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, also mentioned about the need for taking the help of a mediator, if necessary, in the process of talks to solve the imbroglio.

Stating that the condition was still not conducive for resuming work, Tata Motors authorities said yesterday they continued to assess the situation.

A day after Tata Motors employees and officers remained holed up inside the project site for hours following picketing by agitators in front of the main gate, the company suspended work indefinitely from August 29.

Meanwhile, more than 16,000 people signed up in favour of the Tata's project during a day-long campaign at the IT hub of sector five in the city's Salt Lake area.

Techies, students, teachers and housewives put up their signatures on 200-foot flex sheet.

Organised by a group formed through the campaign website ''http://wesupporindustry.silicogene.com/ISR'', the campaign will be spread to other areas of the city also, one of the organisers said.

UNI KDG DPM RD RL RK1408

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