Purandar international airport plan faces farmers’ protest

Even since the announcement of the airport project by CM, farmers have been staging protests in the form of gram sabhas, holding agitations, and rasta rokos

pune Updated: Feb 05, 2018 22:16 IST
Nadeem Inamdar
Nadeem Inamdar
Hindustan Times, Pune
Purandar International Airport,Saswad,Devendra Fadnavis
Farmers from Pargaon, Khanwadi, Ekhatpur, Kumbharvalan, Vanpuri and Udachiwadi, who will lose their lands to the international airport plan, stage a protest in Saswad on Monday.(HT PHOTO)

Pune Thousands of farmers who will be rendered landless in the wake of the land acquisition process for the proposed Purandar international airport held a massive public demonstration in Saswad on Monday. The affected farmers hail from the seven villages comprising Pargaon, Khanwadi, Ekhatpur, Kumbharvalan, Vanpuri and Udachiwadi.The rural sabha was organised by Maharashtra Navnirman Sena Shetkari Sanghatna and led by its state president Baba Jadhavrao. The agitating farmers condemned the government’s move and demonstrated their collective protest against the project.

Even since the announcement of the airport project by chief minister Devendra Fadnavis, the farmers have been staging protest till date in the form of gram sabha, agitating in front of tehsil office, district collectorate, rasta roko and passing resolutions to the effect in gram sabhas. The farmers have decided that the land would not be given for airport construction and the agitation against the government would be intensified with Jail Bharo agitation. The farmers also threatened to resort to euthanasia and will petition the President of India in connection with their demand.

Present during the agitation were zilla parishad (ZP) member Datta Zurange, former ZP member Gangaram Jagdale, Ganesh Jagtap, Pargaon sarpanch Bapu Memane, Khanwadi sarpanch Ramesh Borawake, Ekhatpur-Moonjwadi sarpanch Laxmi Dhiwar, Udachiwadi sarpanch Sunanda Zende, Mahadeo Kumbharkar and Manish Hagavne.

The new international airport was proposed by the state government as the land of Lohegaon airport is small and belongs to the Indian Air Force. The Purandar airport will be constructed on 2,367 hectares of land spread in seven taluka villages and will be called Chhatrapati Sambhaji Raje International Airport as it is being built on Sambhaji’s birth land. The project has received in principle approvals from Airports Authority of India and also the defence’s “conditional clearance” has been granted . The construction is now facing a final hurdle and the challenge is land acquisition.

First Published: Feb 05, 2018 22:16 IST