BALANGIR: The members of Lower Suktel Action Committee started an indefinite ‘Jal Satyagraha’ at Khagsabahal village in Balangir district. Led by Gopalji Panigrahi, they are demanding compensation to the displaced persons of Lower Suktel project as per the 2013 rehabilitation and resettlement policy and completion of the project in stipulated time.
Even as work on the project began three years back, it has been moving at snail’s pace. In the first phase, 21 persons including women launched the ‘Jal Satyagraha’ and a mass demonstration was held in front of the Collectorate.
On the other hand, the ‘Jal Satyagraha’ is being opposed by Budi Anchal Sangrami Sangha, which is opposing the project. Similarly, Agragami Sangha also opposed the protest and tried to disrupt the meet at Khagsabahal. They demanded that R&R issue be settled first before any work on the project is undertaken.
Earlier, a rally was taken out and a meeting held at Khasabahal where Panigrahi addressed the protestors. He said the project is getting delayed for no appropriate reason and the State Government seems to have forgotten its promises to rehabilitate the displaced persons.
As of now, more than 3000 acres of land have been acquired for the project and `106 crore disbursed as compensation. Another 2,500 acres of land are to be acquired and each displaced person is supposed to be allotted 10 decimals of homestead land.