Keonjhar: A face off erupted between the cops and villagers of Hayarpur village under Barbil police station of Keonjhar district on Sunday while the latter attempted to disrupt the construction of pipeline work of a steel plant here.
Two police personnel including Barbil police station Sub-Inspector (SI) Abhimanyu Das sustained injuries in the scuffle. Das has been admitted to Tisco Hospital in Joda, while the other cop is undergoing treatment at Keonjhar hospital. Many villagers were also injured in the face-off.
As per reports, the authorities of Shri Jagannath Steel & Power Limited were trying to lay pipeline through the village to draw water from a nearby river. However, the work was disrupted by the villagers, who demanded jobs for the local people in the company.
Yesterday, when the concerned company authorities were laying the pipeline in the presence of a team of Barbil police, hundreds of villagers protested the move. The situation turned worse after the villagers attacked the police officials with sticks. The police officials resorted to lathicharge in retaliation.
"Despite the disagreement by the villagers, the company was forcefully trying to lay the pipeline. When police tried to convince the villagers to carry out the construction work, we attacked the cops," said a villager of Hayarpur, Ghanshyam.
Meanwhile, over 40 people of Hayarpur village, including women have been detained by the police for interrogation. Further investigation in connection with the incident is underway by the Barbil Police.
The Shri Jagannath Steel & Power Limited authorities and Barbil police are yet to respond on the matter.
(Edited By Rashmi Ranjan Mohanty)