Mamata warns WB govt not to use UAPA against intellectuals
Kolkata: Trinamool Congress leader Mamata
Banerjee today warned the Left government in West Bengal not
to use the stringent anti-terror law Unlawful Activities
(Prevention) Act against intellectuals.
Her warning came two days after the West Bengal
government declared that those demanding release of
Maoist-backed tribal leader Chhatradhar Mahato were punishable
under the Act.
With eminent writer Mahasweta Devi planning to take out a
rally to demand Mahato's release, Banerjee asked the Buddhadeb
Bhattacharjee government not to implicate intellectuals like
the Magsaysay award winner.
"We are keeping a watch on the situation...Mahasweta Devi
is a respected person and intellectuals are assets of the
country. They are for democratic movement. If intellectuals
are touched, we will give a fitting reply," she said.
The Bengali writer and other intellectuals have demanded
release of the People's Committee against Police Atrocities
leader, arrested under the Act for alleged links with Maoists.
Banerjee claimed, "CPI-M had struck a deal with Mahato
before the last Lok Sabha elections and had meetings with him
at the state secretariat a number of times."