Monday, 30th October 2017

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CRPF balm for Mamata

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  • Published 26.08.10

New Delhi, Aug. 25: The Prime Minister is believed to have asked P. Chidambaram to seek a report from Bengal on Mamata Banerjee’s allegations that joint forces deployed for anti-Maoist operations were being used by the CPM to regain lost territory.

Sources said Prime Minister Manmohan Singh patiently heard Mamata out before directing the home minister to seek the report. Singh is believed to have personally called Mamata to discuss proposed amendments to the land acquisition bill, which she is opposed to.

After the meeting, also attended by Chidambaram and finance minister Pranab Mukherjee, Mamata said she had raised the issue of the joint forces. She has been demanding their withdrawal from Bengal.

“Yes, I raised the issue of joint forces. Joint forces are being used by the CPM to regain their lost ground,” Mamata claimed, ducking a reply on whether she had pressed for their withdrawal.

Mamata is also believed to have alleged that the CPM was amassing illegal arms ahead of next year’s Bengal elections and had unleashed a reign of terror in the state. Chidambaram later confirmed she had raised issues relating to Bengal.

Sources said the Centre had paid heed to Mamata’s allegations as her support was crucial to push through the amended land acquisition bill. The matter has acquired added urgency in view of the ongoing farmers’ agitation in Uttar Pradesh.

Mamata, aware that Trinamul was the second-largest UPA partner, apparently used the chance to get the Centre to step up he heat on the Bengal overnment.