Congress asks Bengal firing 'victims' to move rights panel

Last Updated: Mon, Nov 12, 2012 16:10 hrs

Dubrajpur (West Bengal), Nov 12 (IANS) Congress leader and union minister Deepa Dasmunshi Monday asked villagers of Loba in West Bengal to move the human rights panel to seek punishment for those guilty of the "police firing" on them last week.

"We have demanded a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) probe. We will stick to this demand. But the victims must also move the human rights panel. People have been fired upon. It is an illegal firing. Who ordered it we don't know yet," Minister of State for Urban development Dasmunshi said here.

The Nov 6 clashes, in which 27 policemen and six villagers were injured, occurred over a confrontation related to coal extraction by DVC Emta Coal Mines Ltd, a joint venture company, in Birbhum district's Dubrajpur police station area, around 226 km from Kolkata.

Some landowners had opposed additional land acquisition for the project, and seized an earth-moving machine last year. The villagers refused to let go of the company's equipment, after which it lodged a police complaint.

A police force, led by Superintendent of Police R.K. Meena, went to recover the machine but met with resistance from villagers who used bows and arrows.

The villagers, led by the Krishi Jami Rakkha Committee (save firm land committee) have alleged that the police opened fire, but the government denied it.

Attacking Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, Dasmunshi said: "The Trinamool Congress says the incident is fabricated. I think the comments of the Trinamool Congress are fabricated."

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