Dow row: Warkari leader dares arrest

Times of India, July 29, 2008
PUNE: After leading an attack on the research and development (R&D) centre of Dow Chemical International Pvt Ltd (DCIPL) on Friday, warkari leader Banda Tatya Karadkar staged an agitation on Monday demanding that he be held responsible for the attack.
According to the local police, the agitation staged at the Chakan bus stand saw the participation of 50-60 of Karadkar’s followers.
Earlier, the police had arrested 16 persons who were allegedly involved in the attack.
In a statement issued to the media, Karadkar said that he was among the first persons to attack the site on Friday, and hence should be taken into police custody. Karadkar also demanded the release of those who have been detained by the police.
Suresh Ghadge, police inspector, Chakan police station, said, “We have noted Karadkar’s statement, but we have made no arrests in this regard as yet. Currently, the police are busy maintaining law and order to ensure that the palkhis return safely to Alandi.”
“We will officially record Karadkar’s statement after the palkhis have passed. We will take further action only after verifying his claim,” said Ghadge.
He added that according to Karadkar, there were several locals involved in the attack. Earlier, B.G. Kolse-Patil, leader of Lokshasan Andolan, had also claimed the participation of local persons, which, he has now refuted, Ghadge said.
DCIPL has proposed the establishment of an R&D centre on a 100-acre plot at Shinde (Vasuli), about 20 km away from Chakan. The research centre has been an issue of debate, with various organisations like Lokayat and Lokshasan Andolan registering protests on grounds of health and environment hazards.
DCIPL, whose international headquarters are in USA, is planning to invest Rs 400 crore here. Meanwhile, Shiv Sena through a release announced staging an agitation on July 30 at Chakan on Pune-Nasik highway. Arvind Sawant and MP Shivajirao Adhalrao-Patil have organised the stir against Dow.

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