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Call for anti-Posco protests

Bhubaneswar, May 16
Agitated over the police action injuring several protesters opposing setting up of Posco steel plant in the state, Left parties and certain anti-project outfits today called statewide protests on May 20 and 21.

While six non-Congress, non-BJP and non-BJD political parties decided to observe May 21 as a protest day, the organisations opposing the project announced their plan to impose a statewide road blockade next Thursday. A protest meeting will also be held on May 19 which will be addressed by CPI general secretary A B Bardhan at Balitutha, the entry point to Posco's proposed plant site.

At least 30 protesters were injured yesterday when the police fired rubber bullets and teargas shells to evict protesters -- mostly women and children -- opposing the project.

The decision to observe 'protest day' was taken at a meeting of six political parties comprising the CPI, the CPI(M), the Forward Bloc, the JMM, the RJD and the SJP at Bhagabati Bhavan, the state headquarters of th CPI here. "We have also appealed to other parties to support the protest day," the CPI's state secretary Dibakar Nayak told PTI, adding that the police action had crossed "Lakshman Rekha" for a civil society.

As a mark of solidarity to the people campaigning against the South Korean steel major's proposed steel mill, the activists of the six parties will organise rallies, dharnas and civil disobdience agitation across the state, he said. PTI

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