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CPI leader Bardhan against army role

Posted by Admin on October 4, 2009

JAYANTH JACOB
04bardhan.jpgA.B. Bardhan

New Delhi, Oct. 3: CPI general secretary A.B. Bardhan has said his party is opposed to using armed forces in Maoist-infested areas, including Lalgarh, over fears communists and trade union workers may end up being targeted.

“This (the operation against Maoists) can target any-one who says lal salam and salutes a red flag. And they include all communists and trade union workers,” Bardhan said.

The stand appears at odds with the stance of partner CPM, which feels “there is little scope for debate” on the army’s involvement as the guerrillas have been operating almost like an army. “The Maoists are operating as a regular army and they can be dealt with effectively by an army response,” Benoy Konar, a member of the CPM state secretariat in Bengal, had said last month.

Asked what his stand would be if the army was called into Lalgarh, Bardhan said yesterday: “We will oppose it.”

Bardhan tried to argue that the army wasn’t needed. “They (CPM) asked for more forces. There is police and there is paramilitary to deal with the situation,” he said, asked if his stand contradicted the CPM. TT

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