Saturday, November 10, 2007

Centre sends 1,000 CRPF personnel to West Bengal

Saturday, 10 November , 2007, 18:43

New Delhi: With sudden spurt in violence in trouble-torn Nandigram, the Union Home Ministry on Saturday decided to rush about 1,000 additional Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel to West Bengal to deal with the situation.

"Considering the overall situation in the state, the Central Government has decided to make available one battalion (nearly 1,000 personnel) of CRPF to the state government," a Home Ministry spokesman said.

The Home Ministry had asked the state government to make optimum use of the state security force personnel who are familiar with the local language and terrain so as to achieve the desired objective of restoring peace and normalcy in the area, he said.

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The decision to send additional force to West Bengal comes after Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil received a request from Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharya recently in the wake of fresh incidents of violence involving a number of casualties.

Sources in the Home Ministry said the security establishment was keeping a close watch on the situation in Nandigram and was in constant touch with the state government, asking it to take "urgent steps" to restore normalcy in the area.

Bhattacharjee sought CRPF deployment for Nandigram on October 29 during a telephonic talk with the Union Home Minister.

The Communist Party of India (Marxist) had asked Bhattacharya to ensure deployment of CRPF to restore peace and normalcy in Nandigram where activists of CPI-M and Trinamool Congress-backed 'Bhumi Ucched Pratirodh Committee' are locked in a tussle over acquisition of land for setting up an SEZ.

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