Orissa may say no to S Korean Prez's visit to Posco site | india | Hindustan Times
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Orissa may say no to S Korean Prez's visit to Posco site

india Updated: Dec 11, 2009 19:40 IST
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With activists intensifying their stir against Posco's proposed steel project near Paradip, the Orissa government is likely to say no to a visit by South Korean President Lee Myung Bak to the site early next year.

The ground situation at the proposed site is not conducive for such a visit and the state government is mulling over it, a senior government official said on Friday.

The situation was such that it was not possible to hold even a meeting of the Rehabilitation and Peripheral Development Advisory Council, scheduled last month, the official added.

Lee, scheduled to visit India for the Republic Day celebrations in Delhi on January 26, had earlier expressed interest to attend the inauguration of Posco's proposed greenfield project at Kujang in Jagatsinghpur district.

The CPI-backed Posco Pratirodh Sangram Samiti (PPSS) has said that it would oppose Lee's visit. "We will inform the South Korean Embassy not to send the President to the proposed plant site area," PPSS president Abhay Sahoo said.People are ready to sacrifice their lives to protect their fertile land, he said.

Posco, the South Korean steel major, is planning to set up a 12 mtpa steel mill at an investment of Rs 51,000 crore.

Though the company signed an MoU with the state government on June 22, 2005, work has not progressed due to hurdles in land acquisition. While the company required 4,000 acre, it has not been able to acquire an inch.