Today is 25th day of Dharna before Utkal Alumina Internaitonal Limited plant site (wholly owned byHindalco-Aditya Birla Group), in Kashipur. Since 27th February, 2008 the already displaced people of the project (nearly 147 families of twovillages e.g. Kendukhunti, Tala Karol and Ramibeda )are sitting on a dharna with active cooperation fromthe rest of the 24 villages to be affected by the UAIL- Hindalco.
Since then, ongoing illegal construction work, started by the company just after the second phase ofrepression in December, 2004, is stopped. The construction work started by the Hindalco- AdityaBirla is illegal because they don't have proper environment as well as mining permission fromconcerned departments of Governmnet of India. Their permission granted for five years was lapsed in 2000 and since then it has not yet been renewed.
But Hindalco- Aditya Birla company continued their construction work with "support" from Police and state administration. This the true picture of so called industrialization in the state for which the presentNaveen Patnaik government ( BJP-BJD combined) is becoming crazy.
This craziness in Kashipur which has a history of violations of human rights, laws of this landincluding constitutions, now has come to a halt because local people have come and are sitting on adharna.
For Better Compensation :This opposition and dharna are mainly for better compensation. This is obvious because the alreadydisplaced families (displaced in 2006 January from their old villages) don't have any other livelihoodother than better employment.
Rest of the local people including PSSP organization is supporting them. It is commonly decided that if the company fails to fulfill those demands ( like better price for their land, permanent jobs both for landloosers as well as for displaced people, permanent houses etc) then company should leave the area anddisplaced people would cultivate their own land this year when rain comes.
Within these three years, the company has physically occupied only fifty percentage of the required landand has done the earth leveling work as well as the railway track construction work connecting from Tikirito Doraguda Plant Site.
Pressure tactics by District Administration: The district administration headed by Mr. Jyotirmay Sharma, IAS initially was threatening the people toarrest if don't leave the area. They did it for few days. But people became farm. The government hereprobably felt not to arrest any body which may cause wide publicity of the issue again and their illegalconstruction work may come into question.
But local police officials are not forgetting to threaten of arrest. In between, we learned that thecompany has already lodged a criminal case against all of us.
Surprisingly, the local media is totally silent on this issue. They are not carrying any news or storieseven though the work has been stopped for last few weeks. Our apprehension is, probably, the districtadministration and police are pressuring the media not to highlight it otherwise would face consequences. The company's is money is playing a role also. We have experienced in kashipur in these years of struggle that whenever the media becomes silent of our actions, we have gone through sever police repression.
At this stage, the news of dharna should reach many. I request my friends to bring this event to light inwhatever form so that the tactics of company and administration behind implementing the project becomepublic.
For More information you can contact :
Secretary, DPs committee
(Cell No: 09437913923)
Vill: Kucheipadar, Post : Kashipur,Dist : Rayagada,
(Cell No: 09437818854)