Tension over bauxite mining in Koraput

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Koraput: The administration on Friday imposed prohibitory orders at Doliambo in Semiliguda block of Koraput district following a clash between two groups of villagers over bauxite mining at Mali Hills here.

“Prohibitory orders have been clamped down and two platoons of police have been deployed to avoid any untoward incident. We are keeping a close watch on developments,” SDPO (Sunabeda) V R Rao said.

Tension gripped Doliambo village after clashes broke out over the transportation of mined bauxite by Hindalco yesterday.

Agitated villagers damaged more than 20 vehicles of the company and its office located at Doliambo forcing the administration to impose prohibitory orders.

Hindalco was transporting its stocked bauxite which was opposed by the villagers. While a group of villagers opposing it obstructed the vehicles, another group supported the company’s move to transport the ore, leading to the clash.

Sources said the state government had awarded mining rights at Mali Hills to Hindalco and the company had started mining in a portion of the hills in 2005.

But the company stopped its operations after stiff resistance from tribals in 2010. The tribals claimed that at least 44 villages of Semiliguda block would be badly affected by mining and over 20 water sources would dry up. However, villagers supporting mining in the area claim the company brought job opportunities for the locals.

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