Slum dwellers, police clash in Kolkata again

Fresh clashes broke out between evicted slum dwellers of Nonadanga and police personnel here on Saturday, leaving several people injured.

"A large number of slum dwellers on Saturday tried to dismantle a barricade that was earlier put up at the site. When the police tried to intervene, they attacked us. Fifteen people have been arrested," said a senior police officer, who did not want to be identified.

The police resorted to baton charge to disperse the crowds, and several slum dwellers were injured in the clashes. Later, Rapid Action Force was deployed to restore peace, officials said.

The violence comes a day after West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said that some people are trying to malign the government over the Nonadanga issue.

"If these people - involved with NGOs run with foreign funds - use the poor for terrorist or Maoist activities from this platform, then I have to say that better sense must prevail on them," she had said.

Nonadanga, located in eastern Kolkata, has been on the boil since March 30 when the Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority demolished a slum, evicting around 130 families.

The first clash between the evicted people and the police took place on April 4. Then, miscreants April 12 attacked a rally taken out by the slum dwellers and human rights activists.

After the incident, many activists, including scientist Partho Sarothi Roy, were arrested but released after a public outcry.

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