‘Incident In MP Unfortunate’, Says Mamata Banerjee

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Kolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee expressed condolences to family members of six farmers who were killed in alleged police firing in Madhya Pradesh on Tuesday.

“Incident in MP unfortunate. Sad six farmers lost their lives. My deepest sympathies to the bereaved families. We always stand by our farmers,” Mamata tweeted.

Following the killing of farmers, who were seeking loan waivers in MP, Internet services were suspended in Mandsaur, Ratlam and Ujjain due to the protests.

A judicial inquiry has been ordered into the incident. Reacting to the tragedy, Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan declared an ex gratia of Rs 1 crore for the families of the deceased.

TMC insiders claimed that Mamata – who is in Darjeeling – got upset when she came to know about the killings.

“She even discussed the matter with the party leaders, and planned to send a team of Trinamool Congress MPs to meet the family members of deceased in Madhya Pradesh,” a source said.

Mamata is very sensitive towards farmers issue because through this movement in Singur (Hooghly district) and in Nandigram (West Midnapore) she came to power in Bengal.

The agitation in Singur started on October 13, 2006, when the CPM state secretariat endorsed former chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee and former industries minister Nirupam Sen’s decision to lease out 997 acres in Singur to Tata Motors at a concessional rate for Nano project.

And the protest in Nandigram took a brutal turn after the CPI-M government allowed Indonesian firm – Salim Group – to set up a chemical hub under the SEZ policy.

Mamata vehemently protested both the moves and fought for the farmers. Several people were killed during both the agitations and finally, on August 2008, Tata Group Chairman Ratan Tata pulled out of Singur. The same year Salim Group also decided not to invest in Nandigram.

These two farmers’ movement gave a strong political mileage to Mamata and on May 20, 2011, she became the Chief Minister of West Bengal.

“Now with the farmers’ issue in Madhya Pradesh, our Chief Minister will highlight this issue in her public meetings. She has already raised demonetisation, GST, cattle ban etc. and now farmers issue in BJP ruled states. Our party will always stand for the poor people across the country not only in Bengal,” the insider said.