Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Chandauli farmers protest Mamata’s freight corridor plan

Manjari Mishra , TNN 16 December 2009, 03:25am

LUCKNOW: Mamata Bannerji, the saviour of Singur, could well be a closet capitalist to 30,000-odd farmers in Chandauli. The Maoist-ridden district 30

km off Varanasi, known as the ‘Rice bowl of UP’, is on the simmer against the alleged highhandedness of the Union railway minister who has ordered acquisition of 10,000 hectare of fertile agriculture land for the proposed freight corridor between Howrah and Ludhiana.

Giving the development a bizarre twist is firm support coming from state Congress leaders for the beleaguered farmers. UP unit in charge Digvijay Singh shot off a terse letter on September 17 expressing his reservation against the ‘folly’. And now CPM, finding the opportunity too good to miss, has also jumped in against Didi’s ‘‘expansionist designs’’.

The project, covering a cluster of 70 villages between Chari (the last post of Chandauli bordering west Bihar) and Jivnathpur (first block right next to neighbouring Mirzapur) was launched in UP in April 2009, says Kameshwra Nath Mishra, the legal counsellor to Krishi Bhumi Bachao Sanghrash Samiti. The outfit, along with Satya Foundation, has been actively rooting for the farmers’ rights and also networking with politicians. The first phase out of its four phases covers 30 villages stretched over 622 hectare of land. Ten villages have already been surveyed. But that was before the public could smell a rat.

Over the last five months things have hotted up. At least thrice, angry mobs have chased away teams that came to measure and mark the area, Mishra said on Tuesday

1 comment:

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