Land acquisition plan for Posco faces new hurdle

May 16th, 2011 - 8:35 pm ICT by IANS  

Bhubaneswar, May 16 (IANS) Orissa’s plan to resume land acquisition for Posco project in the state faced a new trouble with project’s supporters Monday refusing to cooperate unless their demands were met.

The state government early this month had announced to resume land acquisition for the steel and port project in Jagatsinghpur district May 18 despite local opposition.

Now United Action Committee, which has been supporting the project, said they will extend their cooperation to the local authorities only after fulfillment of their 29 demands. These include more compensation for those who will lose their betel vines and lands and assurance of one job in the company for each of the proposed displaced families.

“We support the project. That does not mean people will accept whatever the government and the company decides,” UAC president Anadi Rout said.

Senior district officials Monday held an hour-long meeting with the pro-Posco group members but it ended without any fruitful result.

“If the government starts the land acquisition process without settling the impending issues, we will not cooperate,” Rout told IANS.

Posco had signed a memorandum of understanding June 22, 2005, for a 12 million tonne steel plant near the port town of Paradip in Jagatsinghpur district, some 100 km from Bhubaneswar.

The project has been touted as the largest foreign investment in India. There has been however no progress on ground yet because of local opposition.

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