Apprehensive that opposition by a small faction could derail or at least delay the 3,200 Mega Watt (MW) Super Thermal Power Plant (STPP) of National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC), affected villagers on Saturday approached the district administration to expedite land acquisition for the project.
Villagers of Darlipali and Raidihi in Hemgir block met Collector Rupa Roshan Sahu and a village meeting has been fixed for Monday.
Reports said a small section recently held a protest meeting seeking cancellation of the Darlipali STPP. The demand caught the land evictees by surprise as they are more than eager for the proposed plant. However, the villagers want the NTPC to increase the compensation which the latter has reportedly agreed to.
NTPC general manager SK Reddy said they expect to produce 1,600 MW from two 800 MW units, in the first phase, at Darlipali STPP to be set up at an estimated cost of ` 11,800 crore. He said spadework would begin by December and power generation by 2016, adding that he sees no “serious threat” to the project as villagers are more than willing to be part of the economic progress.
The Darlipali STPP immediately requires 1,750 acres after the Rehabilitation and Periphery Development Advisory Committee (RPDAC) meeting recently approved
` 20 lakh per acre irrespective of land classification and payment of double the admissible amount in lieu of employment. The AGM in-charge of NTPC’s Dulinga coal mines, Chitta Ranjan Barik, said they have reduced the land requirement to 2,100 acres, adding that while 400 families will be displaced, 600 more will be partially affected.
The Collector said disbursement of compensation would begin in a week and land acquisition would be wrapped up by December.