Locals of Rishing rural municipality-1, the main affected area of the Tanahun hydropower project, have submitted a 35-charter demand to the project on Tuesday. The demand charter was handed to the project to address the issues raised by the affected areas on a priority basis.
Vice-chairperson of Beltar Bachyang Gauda Community Forest Users’ Committee Keshar Bahadur Thapa handed over the charter to the project’s deputy director Tulasi Prasad Sapkota. Locals have strongly demanded proper compensation to the forest group for the project cleaning up the trees of Beltar-Bachyanggauda forest. The locals also called for immediate arrangement of drinking water as the project caused total disruption of water supply from Mukurluk drinking water project in Jhaputar and Beltar areas.
Among other demands are operation of incomplete and obstructed Kisnidi Rohangsidi drinking water scheme, expansion of drinking water pipes in settlements and smooth water supply, routine maintenance and expansion of street lamps and control of noise pollution resulting from the project-operated crusher plants.
Implementation of 33 percent employment to the project-affected communities’ people, equal treatment to the local project staffs in terms of positions, storage of timbers chopped off in the project site, arrangement of security guard in the community forest area and handing over the responsibility to the users committee for the management of trees chopped off in infrastructure development sites, among others, are included in the demand charter.
The locals also demanded framing a definite time-table for routine public hearing and interaction with project-affected sites and setup of a help desk with interpreters to listen and redress the complaints of the communities. Among others are immediate compensation of the land acquired by the project in course of the construction of road to project quarter area, implementation of tripartite agreement for the construction of sports ground and shutdown of extraction of river materials from Seti River banks with the use of big machines against environmental standards.
Receiving the demand charter, project’s social protection expert Dilliraman Dhakal assured the locals of addressing the issues one after another. He pledged to grant prerogative rights to Rishing, Byas, Myagde and Bhimad of the district. ---
Source: National News Agency Nepal