School children stage anti-Posco protest

Bhubaneswar: Protests against the set up of Rs 52,000 crore steel plant by South Korean major Posco continued on third day as over hundred school children joined hands with the villagers to stage a sit-in at Gadakujanga village of Jagatsinghpur district on Wednesday.
 
Under the aegis of Posco Pratirodh Sangram Samiti (PPSS), the students aged between 10-12 years came forward to support the ongoing campaign against the proposed steel plant in the region for which the district administration recently resumed the land acquisition process.
 
“Untill Posco leaves the area, we will continue our strike,” said Abhaya Sahoo, PPSS leader.
 
The sloganeering children also echoed a similar voice.
 
“The lands from this our parents earn livelihood, are very much precious for us. We don’t have any other source of earning other than this. Why we’ll handover our lands to the government which is heedless about our basic problems?” said Manika Devraj a class VIII student. 
 
Meanwhile, the district administration has termed the protest as illegal and requested agitators to co-operate in the land acquisition process.
 
“We are monitoring the law and order situation,” said S K Mallick, collector, Jagatsinghpur, adding that to avoid any untoward situation the administration has deployed police at Badagabapur transit camp.
 
Though the state government earmarked around 3,700 acres of land in Nuagaon, Gadakujanga and Dhinkia gram panchayats in Jagatsinghpur for Posco's $12 billion project, it has so far acquired around 1,500 acres. In next few weeks it plans to acquire around 1,400 acres in Dhinkia, sources in the knowledge of the matter said.
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