Odisha: Nalco expansion protests by locals imposed Sec 144 in Damanjodi

Report by Nishapati Nayak, Koraput: The Koraput district administration imposed Section-144 in Damanjodi area following protests by villagers of Ambogaon over construction of a boundary wall by Nalco.

The administration has also deployed four platoons of police force in the area to avoid any untoward incident.

Sources said the locals have been protesting construction of the boundary wall by Nalco since long pressing for fulfillment of their various demands, including employment in the company. Today, over hundred villagers, including school children staged a stir that halted construction.

Besides jobs, agitators demanded compensation to farmers, supply of fodder as there is no grazing land for their livestock and Rs 5 lakh per annum assistance towards the development of the locality.

“The work order for construction of the boundary wall had been given seven to eight months back. Discussions on the matter have been held with the local representatives several times. We are looking for an amicable settlement,” said Koraput sub-collector, Krutibasa Rout.

“Nalco has neither given us employment, nor taken up any development work during the last 35 years. Now it is going to construct its boundary wall on encroached land. We will not let this happen,” said Dambrudhar Bhoi, a local.
Three Magistrates, including tehsildars of Koraput and Laxmipur, Sub-Collector Krutibas Rout, Additional Superintendent of Police (ASP) V.R. Rao, Koraput SDPO Balabhadra Deep and IICs of Damanjodi, Sunabeda and Semiliguda police stations are at the spot and closely monitoring the situation.

Pointing out that the aluminium major is constructing the boundary on land registered in its name, the Sub-Collector said the locals should not protest. Besides, as many as 77 residents of the village had agreed and signed a personal recognizance (PR) bond during a meeting not to create any problem, he added.


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