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Friday, January 7, 2011

Eight villagers shot dead and 18+ injured in firing near 'Lalgarh'

PTI, Kolkata, 7 January : Eight persons, including a woman, were killed and over 18 injured in firing by suspected armed CPI(M) cadres in Lalgarh in West Midnapore district today even as the administration attributed it to a political clash.
The villagers, who had gathered to protest against demands made by so-called CPI(M) armed cadre that they volunteer for night patrols and arms training, were fired at from a house at Netai village in Belatikri gram panchayat in Lalgarh police station area. "There is an woman among the six dead. The injured have been rushed to hospital where the condition of five is serious," a senior police officer said.
Villagers alleged that armed CPI(M) cadre living in the house of a CPI(M) activist Ranjit Dandapat for the past four months and for whom they were forced to cook and wash clothes, fired on them from inside. However CPI(M) leadership in the district, denied the villagers' allegations, saying there was no presence of CPI(M) cadre camps in the area. CPI(M) minister and local leader Sushanta Ghosh alleged that the Trinamool Congress brought goons from outside to capture the village. Photos : AFP

Lalgarh killings : West Bengal governor expresses anguish
Kolkata, 7 January : West Bengal Governor M K Narayanan today expressed anguish at the armed attack on villagers in Lalgarh and said action was needed to curb the spiralling incidents of violence in the state.
"Violence is not expected in a democracy," he told newspersons here. Narayanan said that he would talk to Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee on the issue. "Action is needed," he governor said referring to the need to take firm action to tackle the situation.

Indian Home Minister asks West Bengal CM to visit Delhi
PTI, New Delhi, 7 January : In the wake of fresh political violence in West Bengal, Home Minister P Chidambaram today dispatched yet another letter to Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee asking him to "reschedule all appointments and visit Delhi immediately".
Describing today's violence in Lalgarh as a "grave incident", Chidambaram said he has received information that eight people were killed in the firing and 18 others were injured in it.

Trinamool Congress politicking over deaths : Biman Bose
Kolkata, 7 January : Senior CPI-(M) leader Biman Bose today said Trinamool Congress taking out a procession here with the bodies of three persons killed in Burdwan district was for staging a "drama" and asserted the party was "politicking" over deaths with such acts. He also said, both Maoists and Trinamool Congress responsible for the firing incident at Lalgarh today.
"The bodies that the Trinamool Congress is parading in the metropolis are of Congress workers. The Trinamool Congress has bought the bodies for staging their drama here. They are politicking with deaths," Bose, the state secretary of CPI(M) and Left Front chairman, told a SFI rally here.

Maoists kill CPI(M) leader at Paluidanga in Junglemahal
Jhargram, 7 January : Suspected Maoists today shot dead a CPI(M) leader at Paluidanga in West Midnapore district, police said.
Dilip Mahato (45) was missing since last evening and his body was found about four km away from his house near a canal early today, they said. Police said Mahato was killed this morning. Some Maoist posters claiming Mahato as a police informer were recovered from near his body. Some empty cartridge shells were also recovered from the spot, the police said.

Food prices: Pranab asks CMs to crack down on hoarders
PTI, New Delhi, 7 January : Amid pressure over rising food prices, Indian Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee today asked State Chief Ministers to crack down on hoarders to ensure smooth supply of essential items from farm gate to retail customers.
Food inflation has touched a high level in more than a year at 18.32 per cent for the week ended 25 December as costlier onions and vegetables jacked up prices of essential items. In a letter, Mukherjee urged them to ensure that all bottlenecks in the supply chain are removed at the earliest.
The minister said the availability of the items that are driving the current round of food inflation in the economy should be improved so that food prices can be brought down quickly. The wholesale food inflation climbed nearly to a year's high of 18.32 per cent, up from 14.

Huge quantity of explosives recovered from Guwahati city
PTI, Guwahati, 7 January : A huge quantity of explosives has been recovered and three persons arrested from Odalbakra area of the city here today, police said.
Acting on a tip-off, police arrested a person, identified as Chengli Thu, while he was on his way to Paltanbazaar area from Odalbakra area and recovered the explosives. Later, two other persons were arrested. About 2000 detonators in 16 packets, 800 Neo-gel gelatin sticks and 14 packets of fuse wire were recovered from them.

Six of a family burnt to death in South 24 Parganas district
Diamond Harbour, 7 January : Six members of a family were burnt to death and another was seriously injured when a fire engulfed their residence at Kanthalberia Road in South 24 Parganas district today, police said.
The family members went to sleep lighting a candle last night and police suspected that the fire spread from the candle and burnt the ground floor room of a building where the family lived.

MP Kabir Suman embarrasses Trinamool Congress again
Kolkata, 7 January : Causing serious embarrassment to the Trinamool Congress leadership, party MP Kabir Suman has written an autobiography and dedicated it to top Maoist leader Kishenji among others.
The book, titled 'Nishaner Naam Tapasi Malik', has an eye-witness account of a meeting held in the office of the Trinamool Congress between party supremo Mamata Banerjee and Maoist leaders Raja Sarkhel and Prasun Chhattapadhyay, who are currently in jail under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.
Yesterday, when leaders of CPI(M), CPI, TDP and JD(S) had submitted a memorandum to Home Minister P Chidambaram asking the government to 'spell out' how it proposed to deal with the 'TC-Maoist nexus', CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury had referred to Suman's book saying a meeting had discussed the intervention of Maoists in Nandigram.