MAC: Mines and Communities

Mcl Land Oustees Resort To Economic Blockade

Published by MAC on 2006-05-24

MCL land oustees resort to economic blockade


24th May 2006

Sambalpur: Coal production and transportation were paralysed as hundreds of land oustees on Tuesday resorted to economic blockade at several places in Jharsuguda district demanding job to the land oustees of the Mahanadi Coalfields Limited (MCL). Residents of 16 villages, including Chharla, Khairkuni, Ubuda, Tingismal and Usraloi, who lost their land for coal production by MCL, sat on dharna braving scorching heat, in five places in Lakhanpur and Ib valley mines area to stop coal transportation.

MCL sources admitted that transportation and production of coal in the Lakhanpur and Ib mines had been paralysed. In Lakhanpur alone production of nearly 42,000 mt of coal was affected. Jharsuguda police said the agitators have blocked railway sidings at Ubuda, Lajkura and Jorabaga. MCL authority said if the blockade continued for another four/five days the power houses of the country, including Odisha Power Generation Corporation (OPGC) at Banharpalli, would suffer major setback in generating thermal power. Land oustee leader Narayan Mohapatra alleged that they were forced to resort to agitational path as the MCL had been adopting a dilly-dallying stance in providing jobs to the oustees. He said they would continue the economic blockade till the demands are fulfilled. Job in MCL, irrespective of land-oustee category, was their first demand besides, proper rehabilitation of the land oustees and development of new colonies and periphery areas. MCL sources said they had provided employment to 25 land oustees after a meeting in January but only two have joined so far. Those employed in the MCL are also not willing to leave the land acquired by MCL. Five platoons of police forces have been deployed and intensive patrolling, headed by senior police officers of the district, was initiated to prevent any law and order problem, Jharsuguda SP S Bala said.

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