Shimla: Communist Party of India (Marxists) has sought cancellation of an upcoming thermal plant at Bagheri in Solan district saying that the project is not only being opposed by local residents but would prove an environmental disaster for the area.
Tikender Panwar, member state secretariat CPI(M) stated a clearing for the project by the forest department was shocking despite the fact that the previous government had put the proposal on freeze and had even suspended some official for wrongful clearance made.
The company which is setting up this project also has interests in cement and hydropower projects in the state and the government is turning a blind eye to gross land law violations for this favored group, said Panwar.
The Bhageri thermal plant will not only affect the ecology of the area, it would severely deplete the water sources of the region, he said.
Panwar added that to cool the proposed thermal plant, large quantities of water would be required which could only be obtained from underground water by drilling deep bores to tap it.
A 2000 feet bore would extract about 11 lakh liters of water daily, which would seriously jeopardize the water table and effect growing of crops over a large area.
Asking the government to cancel the project, the communist party states that while, more people have become dependent upon farming for a livelihood with there being about 9 lakh holdings, arable land has shrunk as more than 1 lakh hectares for fertile lands stand submerged in dam backwaters, used by hydropower projects, industry and cement plants.