By Express News Service – CHENNAI
Published: 05th April 2014 08:19 AM
4 April, 2014 — The 4000 MW Cheyyur coal power project has high potential to irreversibly damage the Odiyur Lagoon, destabilise fisheries and increase the vulnerability of the area to flooding events, according to a scientific study titled “Evaluation of the Waterbirds of Odiyur Lagoon – a Wetland near the proposed Cheyyur Power Plant” by the Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) and the Madras Naturalists’ Society (MNS). Releasing the report at a Press Conference today, Dr. Ravi Chellam, Vice President and Member of the Governing Council of the Bombay Natural History Society, said the study makes a strong case for relocating the power plant and captive port to an alternative location that is in compliance with the siting guidelines issued by the Union Ministry of Environment & Forests. He urged the State and Central Governments to notify the Lagoon and its catchment as an Ecologically Sensitive Area under the Environment Protection Act and regulate activities to ensure the protection of local biodiversity, local livelihoods and the region’s hydrological functions. Continue reading
More than 200 farmers from Vedal in Cheyyur taluka attended a hearing called for by the District Collector of Kanchipuram on 28 January, and unanimously conveyed their decision against land acquisition of their farmlands for setting up the 4000MW power plant. A similar meeting was held at 3 p.m. for farmers from Chittarkadu, Palaiyur and Thaneer Panthal.
Speaking to cheyyur.wordpress.com over phone, Vedal farmer Mani Mudaliar said the administration was unprepared to answer any of the questions raised by the farmers. Farmers pointed out that the lands originally identified by the Central Electricity Authority (CEA) for locating the plant did not have any agricultural lands. They alleged fraud in the manner in which the site has been changed to encompass fertile agricultural lands. Highlighting that the company’s environmental clearance itself states that more than 82 percent of the lands to be acquired for the power plant and toxic ash dump are private agricultural lands, the farmers said that the choice of site vitiates the Environment Ministry’s siting guidelines for coal-fired thermal power plants. The original site identified by a site selection team of the CEA pursuant to a visit in October 2006 comprised non-agricultural and non-forest lands spread over Cheyyur and Mudaliarkuppam villages. The current site is located in Vedal, Gangadevanuppam, Chittarkadu and Palaiyur village and is predominantly agricultural, and includes more than 100 acres of waterbodies, and about 40 acres of Reserve Forests.
The farmers also objected that the Government had violated due process by notifying compensation orders without even sending the “award copy” to individual land owners. Some pointed out that the project had been built on a bed of lies including statements to statutory authorities about the absence of waterbodies and migratory birds.
The District Collector said that the matter is in the Madras High Court and several other fora, and that the Government will now await the court order on the matter.
For more information, contact: Nityanand Jayaraman: 9444082401. Visit:cheyyur.wordpress.com
Even before the Land Acquisition Bill receives Presidential assent and became an act, farmers in Cheyyur have demanded compensation as per rates fixed in the legislation for their farmlands sought to be acquired by a subsidiary of Power Finance Corporation (PFC) for a power plant.
The farmers accused the Coastal Tamil Nadu Power Limited (CTPL), floated by PFC for implementing the 4000 MW Cheyyur Ultra Mega Power Project, of attempting to rush through the land acquisition process to avoid paying higher rate that would come into being once the Act was notified.
The CTPL is acquiring land in Cheyyur and surrounding hamlets of Chitharkadu, Vedal and Gangadevan Kuppam in the district for the project.
The farmers of these villages in a petition presented to the district collector said the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Bill, 2013 ……..Read more http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/cheyyur-plant-farmers-demand-price-as-per-new-land-bill/article5123690.ece