West Bengal violence unabated following food distribution graft charges

November 14th, 2007 - 1:52 am ICT by admin  
Some protesters entered PDS distributor shops in the state’s Murshidabad District and ransacked them, alleging that subsidised food meant for them was being diverted to regular markets and sold at huge premiums by corrupt officials.

“The Communist Party of India-Marxist has exploited us for long. They have killed so many. So much has happened in our area,” claimed Mohammed Naimuddin.

Widespread graft-specific protests have resulted in atleast 200 people, including dozens of policemen, being injured in clashes during the last week in the state.

A Communist party office and a food godown were set afire on Sunday. Some officials were also beaten up.

Earlier this year, a Central Government enquiry found that most rural poor in five states were not getting their subsidised food supplies regularly.

It was found that only 10 percent of rural poor were getting regular supplies in several villages of West Bengal.

Meanwhile, several PDS franchisees have surrendered their permits in fear, even as police said they are investigating allegations of hoarding. (ANI)

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