HT Image
HT Image

Fresh tension at Tata Motors site in Singur

Some 200 farmers clash with the police to reclaim their land acquired for the Tata Motors small car project.
IANS | By HT Correspondent, Kolkata
UPDATED ON MAY 20, 2007 02:50 PM IST

Fresh tension erupted on Sunday at the site of the upcoming Tata Motors small car unit in Singur in West Bengal as some 200 farmers clashed with the police to reclaim their land acquired for the project.

The farmers, led by Trinamool Congress leaders like Becharam Manna and legislator Rabindranath Bhattacharya, who are also leaders of the Singur Krishjami Raksha Committee, marched towards the project site to break the boundary wall. Police fired tear gas and used batons to disperse them.

Policemen deployed in the area, 40 km from here in Hooghly district, prevented the farmers from causing any damage to the wall. But the farmers attacked the police with bricks and some sharp weapons.

"We have dispersed the mob but a constable and a police officer were injured," West Bengal Inspector General of Police Raj Kanojia told IANS. "We are keeping a watch on the situation."

The Trinamool Congress claims that around 20 protestors were injured in the violence.

Manna and Bhattacharya were taken into custody. Social activist Anuradha Talwar, an associate of Medha Patkar, was also detained.

"Today's incident proves that the people are still resisting there and they will not give up so easily," said Sougato Roy, a Trinamool Congress leader.

On May 8, about 200 farmers gathered there and tried to destroy the boundary wall.

Singur has been chosen by Tata Motors for its small car project that will be spread over 997 acres of land.

The issue triggered a violent face-off between the government and the farmers led by civil society groups and parties like the Trinamool.

The latest flare up has triggered fresh tension over land acquisition.

After a political slugfest for weeks, the ruling Left Front and the Trinamool arrived at a consensus on Saturday to hold the much-awaited all-party peace meeting on May 24 to restore normalcy in trouble-torn Nandigram.

The meeting aims to end a crisis that has claimed at least 21 lives since the January flare-up over a special economic zone.

Story Saved