Saturday, May 15, 2010

Police firing on Anti-POSCO agitators

More than 50 persons were injured when police opened fire and

teargas at the villagers staging a dharna opposing the Posco steel

project at Balitutha today. Police first fired teargas shells and set

on fire the tent under which the protestors were sitting on dharna

since January 26. The Police chased the people away from the dharna


About 1500 policemen were engaged in the operation. The villagers

supporting the steel project had also joined the police and hurdled

crude bombs at those sitting on dharna.

The police has arrested 5 women belonging to PPSS and took them to

Kujanga PS. The number of people injured in police action could be

much more than 50 as many injured persons had fled the spot and

returned to their villages.

After retreating from the dharna site, about 5000 villagers had

gathered at a distance of 200 meters away from the site. The policemen

were also present at a distance.

Congress ex-MLA of Balikuda Sri Umesh Swain on his way to Balithuta

has been detained at Kujanga police station.. MP Bibhu Tarai of the

CPI is detained and taken to Kujang circiut house. Spontaneous

protests happening in front of Paradeep, Erasama, Bhubanewar and

Kujanga police stations against the detentions.

Fresh violence was likely as the villagers opposing the steel project

were in no mood to allow police to enter the land selected for the

steel project of the South Korean company.

Nikunj Bhutia/ P.Paikray

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