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HindustanTimes Thu,24 Jul 2014

Kolkata: HC seeks CBI report on Nandigram firing

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  Kolkata, June 12, 2013
First Published: 12:13 IST(12/6/2013) | Last Updated: 12:21 IST(12/6/2013)

Calcutta High Court on Tuesday directed the CBI to file its probe report on Nandigram police firing during CPI(M) regime in 2007.

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Justices Ashim Kumar Banerjee and Mrinal Kanti Chaudhuri passed the directive on a petition filed by the family members of fourteen villagers, who were shot down by policemen. Several women were also allegedly raped.

The agency has been directed to file status report on June 20 for hearing.

Moving the petition, the advocate for the villagers, Rajdip Majumdar, told the court that despite expiry of over six years, the CBI is yet to file charge sheet in Nandigram firing case.

Recently, the CBI reportedly submitted a report to the Mamata Banerjee government, stating that it had not found any proof of former chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee’s involvement in the incident.

The CBI, however, reportedly indicted twelve top cops and government officials responsible for the firing without provocation by the villagers.

The agency also sought the state’s permission to file a charge sheet against five cops.The agency also recommended “major penalty” against the then district magistrate Anup Agarwal and five other officers.

The incident occurred on March 14, 2007, when the armed CPI(M) cadres in police uniform along with about 3,000 cops allegedly raided Nandigram and attacked the villagers from three sides.

The then Inspector General of Police Arun Gupta along with Superintendent of Police Ganghi Srinivasan and Additional Superintendent of Police Tanmay Roychowdhury allegedly led the attack from one side where eleven people were killed.

In another spot, two IPS officers, Satyajit Bandhopadhay and Debashish Baral, were allegedly present along with the officer-in-charge of Nandigram Shekhar Ray.

Acting on a PIL moved by Trinamool MP and advocate Kalyan Banerjee, the high court directed the CBI to probe the incident, but not file a charge sheet without its permission.

Subsequently, the high court held that the police firing was “unconstitutional” and also ordered compensation to the deceased’s family, rape victims and seriously injured persons.

Although the CPI(M) government paid compensation to the victims, it challenged the verdict in Supreme Court. Subsequently, Mamata Banerjee withdrew the appeal from the apex court.


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