Chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee has once again appealed to the Opposition to take part in the all party meeting at Nandigram for the sake of restoring normalcy in the area. “Roads are dug up, bridges and culverts are badly damaged. Schools and colleges are closed. Children are not being able to attend school. Panchayat work has come to a stop. Everything is paralysed. Lakhs of rupees are lying unspent at the Gram Panchayats and Block Development Offices, as no work can be undertaken.”
“Who is suffering, who is being victimized and how long can it continue? The chief minister threw the question at the press conference at Writers’ Buildings, questioning the role of the Opposition, who are continuously boycotting the peace meet and jeopardizing peace initiatives.
Bhattacharjee said that though everyone feels the need of convening such meets for restoring normalcy and return of peace, unfortunately such meets are not happening. He said that the Trinamool Congress backed out of the April 22 meeting at the last moment, despite the administration agreeing to their agenda for the meet. He said that ultimately the local people are at the receiving end. For over four months about 2,500 people, who are CPI(M) party workers, cannot return home.
“They are also human beings. They have a right to return to their home and live a normal life,” Bhattacharjee said.
In fact, some of the violent incidents were taking place everyday and after his meeting yesterday at Haldia some houses were torched, some people were attacked at Nandigram.
According to Bhattacharjee, the peace process and initiatives to restore normalcy cannot be taken with the Trinamool Congress staying away from the all-party meetings. “I do not know why the Opposition is keeping away from the meet, but without their participation the all-party meeting cannot happen,” he added.
Bhattacharjee has asked the administration to arrange for another all-party meeting and ensure that all parties attend it. Asked, if he would call an all-party meeting, Bhattacharjee said that at this stage if he called it, it might not help. Rather he would want the district administration to convene the meeting since it would be primarily involved in bringing back normalcy there.