Posco: Land acquisition to resume after 5-day break

Bhubaneswar: The state government will resume acquiring land for Posco`s mega steel plant in Jagatsinghpur district from Friday after a five day break, even as agitators plan to oppose it.

"We will resume land acquisition and survey from tomorrow. Everything, however, depends on the weather. As there is a depression over the sea, it may create a problem," Jagatsinghpur district special land acquisition officer Surjit Das said.

Steel and mines minister Raghunath Mohanty said "There is absolutely no use of force for land acquisition. We believe in peaceful industrialisation in the state."

The Posco Pratirodh Sangram Samiti (PPSS), meanwhile, decided at a meeting to agitate at the entry point to the Dhinkia gram panchayat.

"Our people protested against Posco in the scorching sun. We are prepared to continue the agitation in the rain, PPSS secretary Sisir Mohapatra said.

To prevent a repeat of government officials entering Gobindpur village through the forest while the protests were on at the entry point, Mohapatra said, "This time we will prevent entry to the village from the forest."

Sources, however, said that the land acquisition in Dhinkia area could be delayed due to absence of some senior district officers.

Congress and BJP have separately decided to send teams to oversee the acquisition.

"We will certainly protest if the government uses force to acquire land," PCC president Niranjan Patnaik said.

BJP`s state Vice-President Ashok Sahu said the party has already expressed solidarity with the people agitating against the Posco project.