The Centre has asked Jharkhand to restore law and order at NTPC’s Pakri-Barwadih coal mining site in the wake of local demonstrations and also sought its assistance to resolve the issue of high rate for transfer of government land for the project.
The issue came up for discussion during the review meeting by Prime Minister Narendra Modi under the PRAGATI platform a few days ago, a source said. The power ministry is of the view that the tense situation at the work site is due to the continuous agitation by a group of people.
“The Centre told the state that since the law and order situation is not conducive at the project site, the state government may provide assistance on the law and order issue,” the source said.
The Centre feels that the high rate for transfer of government land to NTPC is another area that needs to be dealt with.
“Earlier, only Salaami was applicable for transfer of the government land. Presently, both Salaami and lease rent are being applicable, thus making the land cost too high (as high as Rs 3-4 crore per acre,” the source said.
During the meeting, the Jharkhand government was requested to continue with Salaami, but not apply the lease rent. The Centre also wants the state to quickly transfer the balance government and forest land.
“NTPC deposited funds for transfer of 666 acres of government land against which 493 acres were transferred in the name of the company. 2,536 acres of forest land were transferred too,” the source said further. “NTPC is of a view that encroachment in forest and government land is increasing, thus leading to difficulty in physical possession.” It had earlier this year announced the opening of its Pakri-Barwadih coal mining project in Jharkhand.
The ambitious multi-purpose and multi-modal platform, PRAGATI, launched by Modi is aimed at addressing the common man’s grievances and monitoring crucial programmes and projects.