Trinamool Congress hold protest rallies against land ordinance, burn copies

Kolkata, Dec 31: Ruling Trinamool Congress on Wednesday staged protest rallies in West Bengal and burnt symbolic copies of the Centre's land ordinance, which it has described as "black".

Trinamool Congress MPs in Parliament.
Street rallies were held by the party in the heart of city at Esplanade, in south-western Kidderpore, and at block- level across the state as a mark of protest.

TMC workers also held protests in other parts of the city including Park Circus, Jagubabu Bazar and Hazra crossing, police said, adding, the programme was carried out peacefully.

TMC workers carried placards which read "We won't accept the black land ordinance of the central government".

They also sported badges bearing inscriptions, "We are not accepting the black land ordinance".

Later they burnt the badges and copies of the Ordinance. Participating in the protest at Esplanade, TMC labour leader and chief whip of its legislature party in assembly, Sobhandeb Chatterjee said the ordinance was "draconian" and was approved by the central cabinet before taking mass' opinion or consulting the opposition.

The Parliament session concluded only a few days ago and the matter could have been discussed there, he said, adding, "This is nothing but dictatorial attitude of the BJP-led government at the Centre."

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had on Tuesday said the situation under Narendra Modi government was worse than Emergency and her government would not implement the proposed amendments under the Land Acquisition Act.

Terming the land ordinance as 'black ordinance' and "unjust", Banerjee had told a programme at Kharagpur, "They (the Centre) will snatch your land at gun point ... We will not allow this in Bengal. They will have to do this over my dead body." Banerjee, who is also the TMC chairperson, had instructed her party workers to protest against the ordinance by burning symbolic copies of it.

Her outburst had come a day after the Centre recommended promulgation of an ordinance making significant changes in the Land Acquisition Act including removal of consent clause for acquiring land for industrial corridors, PPP projects, rural infrastructure, affordable housing and defence.

"We will fight against the black and unjust ordinance on land acquisition by burning symbolic copies of it," the Trinamool Congress chief, who rode to power in 2011 on the back of game-changing agitations against land acquisition in Singur and Nandigram, had said.


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