Manali: Opposition to land acquisition for a 120 MW hydro power project at Miyar Valley in Lahaul valley by private power producing company Moser Baer mounted as more than 500 people from Trilokinath, Shakoli and Hansa villages resorted to an agitation today.
Talking to Hill Post, Amar Lal, president of Trilokinath Panchayat said the private company was playing a fraud on the people by saying that prices for acquiring private lands for the project were decided by the government and they were only abiding by government orders.
Lal claimed that the prices being offered for acquiring private land was fixed at Rs 39,720 per Biswa at Kukumseri village, it was Rs 2,29,000 per Biswa at Udaipur and 5 Lakh at Madgran Panchayats.
“Highest compensation for land being acquired was being offered to the local MLA’s native village,” said Amar Lal.
However, Surya Kant Khare, Project Incharge, Moser Baer, when contacted said that the concerned panchayats had already given no objection certificate for land acquisition, a year ago.
He added “58 Bighas of land at Kukumseri village was virtually barren as there was no water available and it was only after the request of the local villagers that company decided to open a pertol pump and a housing colony on it.
Khare said, some outsiders are instigating the locals against the company even as the company is awarding just compensation to the affected families.
Meanwhile, the locals have cautioned the company officials that if their demand for proper compensation is not redressed, they would intensify the stir.
“We will go to any extent to protect our land rights, says Amar Lal.
Photo by Sanjay Dutta
Sanjay Dutta, an engineer by qualification but is a journalist by choice.
He has worked for the premier new agency Press Trust of India and leading English daily Indian Express.
With more than a decade of experience, he has been highlighting issues related to environment, tourism and other aspects affecting mountain ecology.
Sanjay Dutta lives in a village close to Manali in Kullu valley of Himachal.