Kendrapara, Jul 3 (UNI) National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) representative Damodar Sarangi today visited the proposed site for the Rs 51,000 crore POSCO-India steel project to assess the alleged violation of human rights.
Mr Sarangi visited Dhinkia, Nuagaon, Gadakujanga and Gobindapur villages of Kujang block in Jagatsingpur district to take stock of the situation after one Prafulla Samantray, a social activist and state president of Lokshakti Abhijan, and others filed petitions before the Commission.
The petitioners alleged that on November 29 the camps of the anti-POSCO supporters near Balitutha bridge were damaged and set afire by some hooligans in the presence of police.
Life had been disrupted and a chaos atmosphere continued to reign in the proposed POSCO sites since the state government signed MoU for the project.
Infightings and bloodbath between the anti and Pro-POSCO activists had been occurring in regular intervals during the past couple of years violating human rights act, the petitioners said.
Mr Sarangi was detained for for a few minutes in his vehicle near one of the gates in Dhinkia, the bastion of anti-POSCO agitators yesterday but later allowed entry on the intervention of their leader Abhaya Sahu.
The anti-POSCO activists told Mr Sarangi that the proposed steel plant of the South Korean company would deprive the livelihood of about 30,000 locals both directly and indirectly.
The income levels of the affected families would go down as they would be displaced from traditional occupations.
Several families, who socially boycotted pro-POSCO activists, also met Mr Sarangi and told him their problem.
Mr Sarangi would submit a report to the NHRC Chairman on his return, sources said.
UNI XC-BD SJC DB2057