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Orissa withdraws police cover from Posco site

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Posted: Thursday, May 20, 2010 at 0035 hrs IST
Updated: Thursday, May 20, 2010 at 0035 hrs ISTBhubaneswar: In a significant development, the Jagatsinghpur district administration on Wednesday lifted prohibitory orders from the proposed Posco site and withdrew the police force from the area. The district administration had clamped section 144 of the Cr PC in an area of 3 km radius around the Balitutha gate on May 15 and cleared the road blockage set up by anti-Posco groups.

The district administration’s step is a fallout of the top level discussion held at the state secretariat on Tuesday. The chief minister’s principal secretary, Bijya Patnaik, reviewed the situation at the Posco site since the May 15 police action.

After the prohibitory order was lifted and the police forces were withdrawn, a political rally was held at Balitutha by six political parties including the CPI, CPM and Rastriya Janata Dal to protest against the police excess on anti-Posco activists.

The rally was attended by over 1,000 villagers from the three gram panchayats – Dhinkia, Gobindpur and Nuagoa—which forms the core area of Posco’s 12 million tonne steel project.

CPI national general secretary AB Bardhan addressed the rally along with leaders of other political parties. The leaders condemned the police action against the villagers facing displacement due to the Posco project.

The six-party protest rally has emboldened the Posco Pratirodha Sangram Smiti (PPSS), the outfit that is spearheading the resistance movement against Posco’s Rs 52,000 crore steel project.

“We will soon re-capture Balitutha,” said PPSS chief Abhaya Sahoo. PPSS activists, who had put up a road blockade at Balitutha denying entry to the Posco sites, were driven out by the police four days ago.

Meanwhile, chief minister Naveen Patnaik has convened a meeting of MPs and MLAs of Jagatsinghpur on Thursday to discuss the Posco project.

Written by janjagriti

May 21, 2010 at 3:09 pm

Posted in News

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