THE CONGRESS sought to deepen the divide in the Left Front over Nandigram by intensifying its attack on the CPM. It deplored its cult of violence and political culture that empowers party cadres to take over the law enforcement machinery.
External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee alleged the state government’s writ was not running in the trouble-torn area and it has failed to protect lives and properties there.
“Nandigram is an example of politics of annihilation and revenge,” said I&B Minister P.R. Dasmunsi who has demanded an NHRC probe. He urged other Left Front partners to persuade the Marxists to quit the path of violence and bring people back to Nandigram.
NDA delegation visit
The BJP, which was earlier planning to take a party team to Nandigram, has now decided to take along its allies. Leader Of Opposition L.K. Advani will lead a group including the Shiv Sena, the JD(U), BJD, SAD. Joining them will be Independent Rajya Sabha MP Sharad Joshi, BJP chief whip S.S. Ahluwalia and Chandan Mitra.
In Bangalore, BJP chief Rajnath Singh demanded a dismissal of the state government over the Nandigram issue. “In West Bengal, there is a complete failure of constitutional machinery. The Nandigram episode symbolises the CPM’s attitude of dictatorship and tyranny.”
Home Ministry watch
The Home Ministry continued to keep a close watch on developments in Nandigram as two CRPF companies entered Bengal’s troubled spot on Monday.
Nearly 500 CRPF personnel deployed in Jharkhand’s Naxal hotbed reached Kolkata by Sunday afternoon.
Another 100 personnel from its all-women battalion posted at Gandhinagar are also expected to reach by late evening on Monday.
A larger contingent — possibly three companies — will move into the area on Tuesday.