Hundreds of protestors clashed with the police at Bharigada under Rajkanika block in Kendrapara district on Thursday while they were holding a rally to protest against the proposed drinking water project on Kharasrota river.
Earlier on Tuesday, the district administration had clamped prohibitory orders under Section 144 of CrPC for a period of two months in three panchayats to expedite the works on the mega drinking water project. Over 35 members of
Kharasrota Banchao Sangram Samiti (KBSS), which has been opposing the mega drinking water project for the last two years, were arrested during the protest.
However, KBSS members decided not to give in to the pressure mounted by the district administration through the prohibitory order. They intensified their stir today by surrounding and getting into a scuffle with the police personnel deployed near the site. The agitated public also damaged vehicles, machineries and earth movers belonging to the firm which has been awarded the contract for the project. Some of the agitators even leaked the diesel tankers.
Tension prevailed in the area following the incident. As many as 16 platoons of police have been deployed near the project site to keep the law and order situation under control.
It is worth mentioning that the proposed drinking water project is supposed to be implemented by drawing water from the Kharasrota river. Local people under the banner of Kharasrota Banchao Sangram Samiti have been opposing the mega drinking water project for the last two years.