23rd Oct 2013
Chennai: Families affected by the 4000 MW Cheyyur Ultra Mega Power Project have written to chief minister J. Jayalalithaa asking her to take steps to urge the Centre to drop the power project to protect their livelihood and houses.
Releasing their identical letters addressed to the chief minister to media, the residents said that they would not provide the land for the coal conveyor from the port to the plant as it would affect their livelihood and harm the rich water resources of the entire area.
“Water is more precious than electricity and there are no alternatives to water. The power project site comprises 100 acre of waterbodies and backwaters, and is coming up in a taluk that has more than 80 irrigation tanks and rich groundwater,” R. Marimuthu, president of village welfare association told reporters here.
Farmers warned the potential investors that the project would not take off. “Besides power plant, port site and ash pond, the project requires at least 200 acres of land for which no acquisition proceedings have begun. This includes crucial components such as railway siding, road access from NH-45 and the 6.5 km corridor for constructing coal conveyor belt, and for bringing process water from the sea and returning effluents to the sea,” farmers said.
Activist Nityanand Jayaraman said that the land acquisition for the port is fraudulent because the land being acquired was rejected as unsuitable by several governmental teams. “Though we had raised the opposition for the project very early, it is very sad that the government has not come forward to enquire our allegations,” he said.