2007 West Bengal food riots

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The 2007 West Bengal food riots happened in West Bengal in India over shortage of food and widespread corruption in public distribution system. The riots first happened in Burdwan, Bankura, and Birbhum districts but later spread to other districts. The riots started on 16 September 2007 in Radhamohanpur village in Bankura district. That morning a few Communist Party of India (Marxist) (CPI(M)) leaders were lecturing the villagers on the dangers of the Indo-US nuclear agreement. They were shouted down and asked to provide foodgrains by the villagers. When CPI(M) leaders tried to chase them away the angry villagers beat CPI(M) leaders and burnt their flags. The police opened fire to quell the mob.

This news of the protest and firing spread and within a day the people across the state came out against corrupt ration dealers and party leaders. Subsequently hundreds of ration shop owners were attacked and their shops and houses looted. At many places, CPI(M) leaders bore the brunt of public anger. Police shot and killed three villagers during the riots and more than 300 villagers were injured in riots. At least three ration distributors committed suicide.

The state government took damage control measures and suspended 113 dealers and served show cause notices to 37 food inspectors.

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