Quarry, crusher unit turns villagers’ bane

Sambalpur: A stone quarry and crusher unit of a road construction firm at Niladunguri under Jujumura tehsil in this district has become a bane for the residents in nearby villages.

The firm is reportedly engaged in construction of Sambalpur-Tileibani stretch of the National Highway-53.

Residents alleged that their houses have developed cracks due to frequent blasting in the quarry. Moreover, the pollutants and dust discharged from the cement mixing plant of the firm are adversely affecting locals’ cultivation by enveloping the farmlands in the vicinity.

Locals alleged that the construction firm has been harassing them for years and all their complaints before the company authorities have fallen into deaf ears.

They alleged that the common people are being tricked in the name of development. According to locals, the construction firm has its cement mixing plant at Pradhanpali mouza.

A farmland owned by the village temple lies in close proximity to the plant. The crop harvested from this land is used as offerings in the famous Samaleswari temple in Sambalpur town.

However, the firm is forcibly discharging the effluents and waste water from its plant to this farmland.

Locals have drawn the attention of the district administration, block officials and the state pollution control board (SPCB) demanding action but to no avail.

Recently, villagers Pramod Kumar Mishra, Milan Dehuri, Sabita Behera, Shankar Rana, Prabhakar Rana, Jagannath Sahu, Nimain Barik and hundreds of others submitted a memorandum to the Jujumura tehsildar demanding his intervention, May 9.

Later, tehsildar Abhishek Sahu accompanied by the revenue inspector visited the spot. The tehsildar went around the farmland and had a discussion with the farmers on the issue.

Meanwhile, more than a fortnight has passed since then but the tehsildar is yet to take any action in this regard.

When contacted, tehsildar Sahu confirmed the development. He said that a report has been prepared and further action will be taken on the order of higher authorities.

Suryawanshi Mayur Bikash, sub-collector, Sadar said no illegalities will be encouraged in the name of development and action will be taken on the basis of the report.

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