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One Person Killed In Police Firing Protesting Land Acquisition In Hazaribagh

By Countercurrents.org

23 July, 2013

One person was killed in police firing against villagers protesting against land acquisition by National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) for its upcoming plant in Keredari, Hazaribagh district of Jharkhand state, India . According to Deepak Das, of Karanpura Bachao Sangharsh Samiti, Tarkeshwar Mahto, 30 died in the firing. Four others are critically injured and admitted to hospital.

IANS quoting police sources reported that the protestor died after he was shot by the security guard of a contractor. The same report says that the local villagers said that death occurred in police firing.

About 250 villagers comprising mostly of Dalits were sitting on dharana as the contractors tried to forcefully start working in the area despite the fact that the villagers had not given away their land. The villagers have been protesting against land acquisition since 2005. NTPC want to acquire over 30000 hectare land.

Jharkhand Mines Area Co-ordination Committee condemns Keredari Police Firing

JAMACCRanchi (Press release), 23 July 2013: Only few days have passed since the formation of Government Jharkhand Mukti Morcha and Congress in the State in which Police have manifested callousness and barbarity against the innocent villagers. Without the presence of Magistrate Police of Keredari Thana fired indiscriminately. One person died at the spot and four other were critically wounded, three of them are in critical condition. Jharkhand Mines Area Co-ordination Committee (JMACC) vehemently criticized and alleged that this kind of incident occurred for the protection of alliance of NTPC and feudal elements.

Villagers have been protesting against proposed NTPC’s project at Chatti-Bariatu for very long time. NTPC has been trying to enter into the area continuously, but villagers always opposed. NTPC acquired land from Pradeep Singh who was awarded the Tender. When he started the work, people rushed to the worksite and opposed. Then the son of Pradeep Singh went to the house of Kamal Mahto whom he attacked with Kudali (a instrument of agriculture) and inflicted severe injuries.

As villagers opposed the attack by the son of Pradeep Singh and they tried to catch him unsuccessfully. Then police reached at Pagar and started firing. Tarkeshwar Mahto alias Kesar Mahto aged 30 was killed in this firing. Four people received serious injuries, the condition of three people out of four is very critical.

JMACC said that firing by police on innocent villagers is criminal act. For this heinous crime a criminal case should be lodged against them. Alice Cherowa, spokesperson of JMACC said that firing at people without the order of Magistrate is illegal. Ms Cherowa added further that social tension was created by NTPC, which led to this firing. Police could have dealt with social tension cautiously but firing was orchestrated by police for the protection of the vested interest of NTPC. JMACC demanded judicial inquiry into the incident and urged to scrap the project of NTPC immediately without any delay. NTPC with collusion of local police is creating social disharmony and social tension in the Karnpura region.

JMACC along with other people’s organizations gathered at Albert Ekka Chowk to condemn the killing. The effigy of Hemant Soren, the Chief Minister of Jharkhand was burnt in protest of the killing of innocent people.





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