Kolkata: Mamata Banerjee government’s bid to buy peace in Junglemahal has faced its first major road block as the stakeholders - the Maoists, People's Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA) and Jharkhand Andolan Samannoy Manchya (JASM) – have put forth 18-point demand before the Bandi Mukti Committee, a panel constituted by the West Bengal government to chalk out ways to release political prisoners.

The Bandi Mukti Committee held a meeting with Chhatradhar Mahato, leader of the People's Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA), Maoist leader Sudip Chongdar and members of the Jharkhand Andolan Samannoy Manchya (JASM) in Midnapore Central Jail.

The PCAPA leader and Maoists placed an 18-point demand before the four member committee comprising human rights activist Sujat Bhadra, Asakendu Sengupta, Chhoton Das and Prasun Bhowmik.

Though the committee declined to disclose much in respect of the 18-point demand, sources said it includes demand for an autonomous council for Jungle Mahal under the sixth Schedule of the Constitution.

Other major demands includes withdrawal of combined forces from the naxal-infested region; recognition for regional languages like Santhali, Kurmali and Mundari; declaring June 30 as Hool’s Day and a government holiday on November 15 - birth date of Birsha Munda; giving status of national festival to tribal festivals like Bandhna, Makar and Sarhul.

(JPN/Bureau)