The bone-chilling toll in Nandigram in West Bengal yesterday over acquisition and reclamation of land for the creation of a Special Economic Zone, pits agricultural Bharat with industrial India in an eyeball to eyeball confrontation. Coming as it does on the heels of similar but much less bloodier trouble in Singur, it shows the disconnect between political/business rhetoric and hard reality.
Questions: Will any SEZ now be allowed to come up in its original form without trouble, or have Nandigram and Singur set a precedent? Are SEZs the only route to progress or is it the biggest landgrab in independent India? Will India miss the bus if SEZs are not allowed to come up? And has the Left doublespeak—opposing in Delhi what it desperately welcomes in Bengal—been exposed once and for all times to come?