JSPL land oustees lift blockade, agitation persists

Angul: Land oustees of JSPL today lifted blockade before the company gate to facilitate movement of people living in the steel plant premises here in accordance to  High Court`s direction.

"We have lifted blockade from gates in response to the High Court order. However, we will not allow movement of any material inside the plant premises for construction work," said Sanatan Sahu, secretary of Birankeswar Khyatigrastha Praja Samiti – an organisation of land losers.

"Our people will sit on dharna near the steel plant and prevent transportation of any material," he said.

The people of Angul had been opposing the construction work at the steel plant site protesting attack on land oustees where about 160 people including women were injured on January 25.

"We hope that the people will clear blockade at all places as the company had already agreed to fulfil 13 of the 20 demands made by the Samiti. Rest of the demands will be taken for consideration in the next meeting after the panchayat polls," said S P Mishra, Angul district collector.

Meanwhile, the member-secretary of National Commission for Women Anita Agnihotri and the chairperson of the State Commission for Women Jyoti Panigrahi visited the area and spoke to the women injured in the January 25 clash.

"I found women seriously beaten up in the incident. The SCW will certainly suggest the state government to take action against the persons responsible for attack on women," Panigrahi said.