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Rehab only on paper: NBA support group

THE NARMADA Bachao Andolan (NBA) Support Group that conducted a 'pol khol yatra' in parts of affected parts of the Narmada Valley today reiterated its stand that rehabilitation claimed by the Government was only on papers.

india Updated: Apr 30, 2006 15:14 IST

THE NARMADA Bachao Andolan (NBA) Support Group that conducted a 'pol khol yatra' in parts of affected parts of the Narmada Valley today reiterated its stand that rehabilitation claimed by the Government was only on papers.

The group has also demanded the State Government as well as the Union Government tell the ground reality to the Supreme Court and themselves demand stopping of further increase in the height of the Sardar Sarovar Dam.

In a press conference today, Multai MLA and Samajwadi Party leader Dr Sunilam, who was part of the yatra, also said the support group was demanding filing of criminal cases against the officials who presented wrong statistics regarding rehabilitation and indulged in corruption related to the issue.

Dr Sunilam said the list of such officials had already been forwarded to the Government. It was mentioned the 'Pol Khol Yatra' covered about 12 villages in Dhar, Khargone, Barwani and Jhabua districts of Madhya Pradesh and Nandurbar district of Maharashtra. Participants met thousands of villagers from about 100 affected villages.

The tour began on April 25 and ended on April 28.  Educationist Anil Sadgopal, who was part of the tour, said the visit revealed the claim that the people displaced by the dam had been rehabilitated was entirely untrue.

Participants said forget oustees coming into the submergence area of 121 metre height, even those evicted as a result of dam height at 69 metres had not received adequate compensation or rehabilitation.

They said Supreme Court guidelines regarding provision of arable land against arable land and rehabilitation with all basic amenities were being violated.

People were being offered cash compensation that too half the amount which goes to show that the Government does not have enough arable land to give farmers. Participants also claimed that the survey for entitlements were inefficient and entire sections of village had been left out.

Livelihoods of those involved in non-agriculture occupations were not taken into account.Overall, the support group said, it was found that none of the villages visited, which are slated for submergence if the dam height is raised to 121 meters had been rehabilitated.

Rehabilitation of this magnitude was not possible in three months and thus the only option available was stopping of the dam construction.