January 5, 2009

Mamata launches sit-in protest near CM’s house

KOLKATA, Saturday, 03 January , 01-00 am, 2009: Hundreds of Opposition Trinamool Congress workers, led by Mamata Banerjee, put up a road blockade near West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee's residence late on Friday night. They were demanding release of 18 agitators arrested by the police for indulging in violence to protest a court ban on two-stroke public transport vehicles.

Police stopped Mamata and other Trinamool activists about 500 m from Bhattacharjee's Palm Avenue residence, prompting her to organise a sit-in demonstration at the spot. An angry Mamata wanted to know from the police why they were stopped. "There are no prohibitory orders here."

Demanding the immediate release of those arrested, Banerjee said: "Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) leaders can murder and sleep peacefully. I can't". Mamata put the blame for the torching of buses earlier in the day on the CPI-M, and said: "If they can prove we had set fire to the buses, I shall quit politics."

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