20 injured in police cane-charge on protesting Left activists
May 6, 2007 - 10:20:38 PM
Hyderabad, May 6 - At least 20 people were injured Sunday when police cane-charged hundreds of protesting Communist Party of India-Marxist - activists in Hyderabad and Tirupati as they attempted to squat on open government lands demanding distribution of land among the poor and landless.
The CPI-M alleged that the government was gifting away valuable lands in the city to IT companies, neglecting the poor and the landless.
The 'Bhuporatam' agitation demanding distribution of the land for houses among the poor turned violent while police caned protestors at a few places.
Police arrested dozens of CPI-M leaders and activists and used force to disperse people, including a large number of women, who squatted on the land at six places in and around Hyderabad and four places in Tirupati and even erected makeshift huts.
Led by party MP P. Madhu, hundreds of CPI-M activists carrying party flags occupied vast lands in Mahindra Hills, Langar Houz and at other areas on the city's outskirts.
Hyderabad District Collector Chandravadun and other officials tried to convince the protestors to vacate the lands. They cautioned protestors from taking law into their hands.
The collector expressed the Andhra Pradesh government's inability to provide individual house sites in and around Hyderabad saying land was not available for the purpose. He, however, assured to provide houses for 40,000 poor people.
Dozens of CPI-M leaders and activists were taken into custody at Langar Houz. Protesting the police action, the activists blocked traffic.
In Tirupati, police caned protestors after the latter resorted to stone throwing. Two policemen were among 18 people injured in the stone throwing and caning.
CPI-M activists had earlier occupied government lands in the coastal city of Visakhapatnam in January this year.
Meanwhile, Communist Party of India -, an ally of the ruling Congress party, has condemned the police action against the protestors and announced that it would join hands with the CPI-M for the agitation to seek house sites for the poor and landless.
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