Now, the Communists call a pro-industry march to Singur

September 13th, 2008 - 8:14 pm ICT by IANS  

Kolkata, Sep 13 (IANS) After the 15-day siege of Tata Motors’ Nano plant by the opposition Trinamool Congress, it is now the turn of the state’s ruling Left coalition to launch a campaign in favour of the small car project Sep 15.Senior Left Front (LF) leaders will converge on Singur Sep 15 to hold a rally to build up public opinion for the project, which has become doubtful after the Tatas suspended operations from Sep 2.

“On Sep 15 at 3 p.m., senior LF leaders will hold a rally in Singur to kick-start the campaign in favour of industrialization of the rural pocket,” the Left Front chairman Biman Bose told reporters after a meeting of the coalition partners here Saturday.

“In order to build public opinion in favour of the Tata Motors’ project, the LF will campaign across the state in various districts after that,” he added.

“Singur Chalo (March to Singur) is the motto for September 15,” he said, adding the campaign is not being launched targeting any individual or party.

Regarding the compensation package placed before the opposition by the state government Friday, Bose said an additional 50 percent of the land price would be given to all those whose land was acquired for the project.

“This is to ensure that all those who want to do farming can purchase land elsewhere and continue with agriculture. The LF is also requesting farmers who are yet to collect their compensation cheques to take their money,” Bose said.

The state government will come out with advertisements in all newspapers Sunday detailing the compensation package to make the public aware of its intentions.

Describing the Tata Motors’ Singur facility as an ‘integrated cluster of projects’ where ‘one unit cannot be separated from others’ he said: “The maximum quantum of land, which can be offered within the project area is 70 acres.”

Bose claimed that “more than 83 percent of land losers” have already taken money.

On Friday evening, Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee and the state government failed to agree on the acreage to be given to farmers to compensate for agricultural land “forcibly” acquired for the small car project.

Banerjee was apparently upset over the government offering the “unwilling farmers” a “mere 70 acres” within the factory site against her demand for “at least 300 acres”.

Banerjee found the government’s offer “unacceptable”.

Tata Motors started setting up the unit at Singur, 40 km from here, two years ago to produce the world’s cheapest car Nano, priced at Rs.100,000 ($2,250). The company has invested Rs.15 billion in the project so far, its officials said.

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