After farmers organisations in Sankrail pulled off a Singur on her, Trinamool Congress chief and railways minister Mamata Banerjee has chosen Andal in Bardhaman district as the new location for the setting up of a wagon component factory.
Hours before the minister was scheduled to lay the factory’s foundation stone at Sankrail in Howrah district on January 13, the project was shelved — with CPM-backed farmers groups remaining insistent on enhanced compensation package for land acquired and railway jobs for one member of each family dispossessed of land. The railways acquired 633 acres of land at Sankrail in 1982-83, and the farmers got full compensation.
Accusing the CPM of throwing a spanner in the works at Sankrail, Banerjee asked a rally in Krishnagar last week: “Is it my fault that I decided to set up factories there? The plot at Sankrail was acquired well before I became an MP. The CPM had no problem that the site was lying unused for so many years. Now that I have planned to set up a factory there, they have embarked upon a campaign against it.”
Even as Didi decided to shift location, she is apprehensive about similar demands cropping up from farmer groups.
Two and a half years after having blocked plans of the Tatas’to set up the Nano factory at Singur, Banerjee is apparently getting a taste of her own medicine.