Medha Patkar stopped on way to Lalgarh

KOLKATA - A 10-member team, comprising social activist Medha Patkar and her associates, was stopped near Debra locality by the police while they were on the way to violence-scarred Lalgarh in West Bengal Friday, a social activist said.

“The team was stopped near Debra police station area, about 40-km from Lalgarh. They were also physically harassed by the police personnel,” human rights activist Anuradha Talwar said.

She said: “The team was heading towards Lalgarh to stand by the side of tribals who were suffering due to the police-Maoist crossfire.”

Besides Patkar, the team also comprised popular documentary filmmaker Gopal Menon and social activist Sujato Bhadra.

Initially the members of the team were booked under Section 151 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) but later they were released on unconditional bail, police sources said.

“I am now going to be admitted in a Kolkata-based hospital as I’ve vomited thrice since that fracas,” Menon said.

Meanwhile, state Director General of Police Vupinder Singh and Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) DG A. S. Gill Friday visited troubled Lalgarh to monitor the situation. They also held high-level meetings with other senior police personnel and district administrative officials to restore normalcy in the region.

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