Jharkhand villagers boycott minister to oppose land takeover

May 9th, 2008 - 3:15 pm ICT by admin  

Ranchi, May 9 (IANS) The villagers of Dumka, who are opposing the setting up of a power plant that threatens to take away their land, have decided to boycott Jharkhand Agriculture Minister Nalin Soren and seven others who are backing the project. On Thursday, hundreds of villagers met under the leadership of Disom Manjhi, who heads a group of villages, at Pokhari village of Dumka, around 450 km from Ranchi. He heard the plea of the villagers and announced `Bithal’ (boycott) of the minister and seven other people.

The people who will be boycotted include Basant Soren, son of former central minister and JMM chief Shibu Soren, and Jaiprakash Toppo, officer in charge of Kathikund police station.

According to villagers, the minister and the police official are playing a crucial role in setting up of the 1,000 MW power plant by a private party.

They charge that Soren and others have helped the power company to get land. The villagers are opposing the land acquisition for the power plant.

“The minister and other people have been boycotted in the meeting of the Disom Manjhi. They will not be allowed to interact with the villagers,” said Munni Manjhi, a member of Jharkhand Ulgulan Manch (JUM).

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