Posco pot hots upPublished by MAC on 2006-02-08
Posco pot hots up
by Statesman News Service, JAGATSINGHPUR
8th February 2006
After the displacement related crisis at Kalinga Nagar, the focus is now on the proposed Posco plant area here with protest movements organised by the Rastriya Yuva Sangathan and Navnirman Samiti making elaborate plans for the impending visit of Ms Medha Patekar and several social activists of national stature.
The RYS and NNS are leading the movement against displacement by Posco plant and are demanding cancellation of the MoU between the state government and the South Korean company. On 12 February, Ms Patekar and others will hold a meeting here to strengthen the peoples movement against the proposed plant.
Already, activists of RYS and NNS are on a mass dharna in front of the revenue inspector's office at Nuagan. They alleged that the project will destroy rich agricultural economy of the area particularly at Dhinkia, Nuagaon and Gdakujang. The proposed dedicated port to be set up by Posco will render the Paradip Port sick, they alleged. The RYS and NNS have threatened that they will not allow Posco representatives to enter the affected villages and will not give an inch of land for the project.
Mr Biswajit Ray, convener of RYS and NNS informed that besides Ms Patekar, the head of Akhil Bhartiya Sarvodya Mandal, Mr Amarnath, national leader of Rastriya Yuba Sangathan, Mr Avinash Kakade, chief of Uttar Pradesh farmers movement Mr Rakesh Rafique and several other eminent social activists will address the meeting at Naugaon lending support to the movement on 12 February.
4,000 acres for project
The state government has agreed to provide 4000 acres of land for the proposed steel plant to be established by the South Korea's Pohang Steel Company (Posco) near Paradip, SNS adds from Bhubaneswar.
Responding to the queries of BJD member, Mr Ranendra Pratap Swain and Congress member Mr Lalatendu Bidyadhar Mohapatra, industries minister Mr Biswa Bhusan Harichandan informed the Assembly that out of the 4000 acre land identified for the purpose, 3566.56 acres were government land while the rest of 437.68 acres were owned by private individuals.
The price of government land has been fixed at Rs 25,000 per acre as per the provisions of Industrial Policy Resolution-2001, rate of the private land will be determined according to the law, he said.
As many as 20 private companies including Posco have signed MoUs with the state government during the current financial year for establishment of steel plants.The first phase of Posco is expected to be commissioned by 2010. Other steel plant projects will commence production within 3 years, said Mr Harichandan in response to queries of Mr Sudhir Kumar Samal and Mr Utkal Keshari Parida.
An estimated 47018.05 acres of land are required for the establishment of all the proposed steel and other plants, informed the minister while replying to a related question by Congress member Mr Gajadhar Majhi.
The Industrial Infrastructure Development Corporation (IDCO) has acquired 12999.67 acres of land in Kalinga Nagar for industrial purposes at the end of December, 2005. Out of it, 2400 acres of land have been allotted to the Tata Steel for the establishment of its proposed mega steel plant.
So far, 1970.903 acres of land have been leased out for 84 years while the process is on for leasing out rest of the land, said Mr Harichandan in response to queries of OGP member, Mr Arun Dey and BJD member Mr Ananta Das.