Jamait turns up SEZ heat

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By OUR BUREAU in Calcutta
  • Published 27.01.07

Nandigram/Calcutta, Jan. 27: The Jamait Ulema-i-Hind today threatened to step up its agitation against the government if land is forcibly acquired for setting up a special economic zone in Nandigram.

Addressing a rally in Nandigram, which was rocked by violence two weeks ago, Jamait general secretary Siddiqullah Chowdhury said: “Land in Nandigram belongs to the people of Bengal and not the Salims.” He was referring to Indinesia’s Salim Group, which has proposed to set up a chemical hub in Nandigram.

“Chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee should understand the sentiments of the people before making moves to acquire land for creation of an SEZ here. Our organisation is preparing for a bigger movement against the state government, and the farmers of Nandigram are with us.”

Chowdhury told the crowd that sports and transport minister Subhas Chakraborty had contacted him a few days ago to explain the government’s stand on industry and also sought an assurance from him that the Jamait would co-operate with the state administration. “I told him that Jamait will talk and co-operate with the government only if an assurance is given that land would not be taken in Nandigram,” the Jamait leader said.

500 held in Singur

In Singur, police today arrested nearly 500 CPI (ML) Liberation activists, including its secretary Kartik Paul, for violating prohibitory orders. They were protesting against land acquisition for the Tata Motors project.