Bhushan Steel surveyors roughed up in Jharkhand

September 12th, 2008 - 7:07 pm ICT by IANS  

Ranchi, Sept 12 (IANS): Coming soon after the farmers’ agitation over land allotted for Indian automobiles major Tata Motors’ Nano small car project in West Bengal, farmers in Jharkhand have gone on the warpath on the issue of land acquisition for industry.Three land surveyors hired by Indian steel producer Bhushan Steel who went to Potaka village in East Singhbhum district of the state were held hostage by villagers Thursday for three hours and made to wear garlands of shoes.

Ironically, Jharkhand is one of the states that has invited the Tatas to relocate their Nano car plant to the state.

When they came to know about the survey, around 500 villagers roughed up the three surveyors Yusuf Ahmad, Sheetal Kumar and Sahdeo Singh.

The three had gone to the village, some 300 km from here, Thursday afternoon to survey land and assess other aspects for locating a new Bhushan Steel unit there.

Bhushan Steel had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the state government to set up a three million tonne steel plant and a 900 MW power plant with a total investment of Rs.105 billion.

The company has applied for land in East Singhbhum district. It has already been allocated a coal block and iron ore mines.

“We will review our decision to set up the plant in Jharkhand if the situation remains this way. The local people will get benefits from the company,” a Bhushan Steel official said.

The people protesting the survey told the surveyors that they were not willing to give any land to any company.

Reacting to the incident, Deputy Chief Minister Sudhir Mahto in charge of industries department said Friday: “This is unfortunate if such incident has taken place. We will provide security if the company authorities wants.”

“The state government is determined to go ahead with the development of industries in the state,” he said.

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