Protest against land acquisition for MRPL expansion

Protest against land acquisition for MRPL expansion

Protest against land acquisition for MRPL expansion was held in Mangaluru on Monday. DH photo

Farmers, fishermen and members various organisations under the aegis of Karavali Karnataka Janabhivridhi Vedike, staged a protest in front of DC’s office, in Mangaluru opposing the expansion of Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Limited (MRPL).

Addressing protesters on Monday, William D’Souza of Krishi Bhoomi Samrakshana Samithi urged the authorities to withdraw land acquisition process.

“We will not give our land for the fourth phase expansion of MRPL at any cost. Fertile farm land in Kuthethooru and Permude villages are notified for land acquisition by the authorities. Inspite of submitting a comprehensive report on the ill-effects of the expansion of industries to the ecologically sensitive region, the authorities are going ahead with the land acquisition process. The Karnataka Industrial Areas Development Board (KIADB), in the past had already acquired enough land for industrial purposes. This is idle even to this day. Already acquired land should be used for fourth phase expansion of MRPL,” he demanded.

The protesters demanded Deputy Commissioner Sasikanth Senthil to arrive at the spot and receive memorandum. Finally, the DC arrived at the protesters and listened to their grievances.

Later, speaking to mediapersons, the DC said it was a long pending demand of a section of the farmers not to acquire land for industrial purpose. The case pending before the court, he added.

“I will convene a meeting of the farmers to discuss the issue within a week,” he assured.

Meanwhile, the meeting convened to fix the rate for the land to be acquired will be continued as per the directions of the court. About 82 % of the farmers have given their consent for land acquisition.

In a memorandum submitted to the chief minister through deputy commissioner, the Vedike urged the government to withdraw its permission for expansion of MRPL and to stop the land acquisition process initiated by the KIADB.