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NHRC raps Odisha Chief Secy over plight of Indravati displaced mass

ANI | Updated: May 28, 2021 16:55 IST


New Delhi [India], May 28 (ANI): The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Thursday warned of coercive action for the "lethargic" and "lackadaisical" attitude against the Chief Secretary of Odisha while issuing the final reminder to submit a comprehensive report in addressing the prolonged plight of the displaced mass in Asia's Largest Hydro-Electric Power Project of Indravati affecting more than five districts of Odisha.
The Apex Human Rights Panel has been passing series of directions and got the issue investigated by its Special Rapporteur adjudicating a couple of petitions and subsequent submissions filed by noted social and human rights activist and Supreme Court lawyer Radhakanta Tripathy.
Tripathy has urged the NHRC for immediate intervention of the Commission to take up the matter with the Chief Secretary of Odisha for the unreasonable delay to comply with the 32 recommendations of Special Rapporteur Damodar Sarangi.
According to his report, the project affected many more villages in Kalahandi and Nabrangpur as well as in the Koraput districts. The displaced persons have been shifted to more than 500 resettlement clusters spread over Kalahandi, Nabrangpur, Korput, Malkangiri, and Rayagada districts which need that the matter to be further investigated, Tripathy said.

Pursuant to the directions of the Commission, reports have been submitted at different points in time to avoid the eyes of the NHRC.
Earlier a report of January 31, 2018, was submitted by the Department of Home, Government of Odisha along with an inquiry report of the Revenue Divisional Commissioner, Southern Division.
The report stated, "Despite several initiatives taken by various Government departments across different sectors, there is no denying the fact that certain issues do remain unresolved like; unhindered transport and communication within the Gram Panchayat and with other areas, including the Block headquarters Dasmantpur and Koraput district headquarters. The waters of the Muran Dam (Indravti reservoir/lake) is a big obstacle, suggestions to assuage have been given in the relevant section. Further, effective dove-tailing of efforts involving various agencies and schematic funds would alone address the problem of intra-GP connectivity."
The Commission is also in receipt of comments from the Complainant in compliance with the direction of February 24, stating thereby that victims are poor rural mass belonging to lower strata of the society and their problems continue till date as remedial measures are yet to be taken by the State.
The Commission has considered the comments of the complainant and directed the Chief Secretary, Government of Odisha for submission of the additional report in view of the light of the comments of the complainant. Report to be filed within four weeks, failing which the Commission would be constrained to issue coercive process, the NHRC said. (ANI)

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