Since 1972, the villagers of Balarampur and adjoining villages of Dhenkanal district have been protecting 92 acres of forestland. This land is adjacent to Tansa Hill, which is also a forest spread across 600 acres. This patch is home to various wild animals and is also an elephant corridor. Further, the village residents depend on this land for minor forest produce. They claim industrial activities in this area would lead to an environmental disaster. The conflict started when the state government converted the 92 acres of forestland to revenue land. An area of 12.86 acres of grazing revenue land was dereserved and transferred to the Industrial Development Corporation of Odisha (IDCO) on lease for the construction of breweries. The villagers alleged that the entire process was initiated without the approval of the Central government, which is a violation of Section 2 of Forest Conservation Act, 1980. The entire plot of land is a physically dense forest growing various matured timber species. If any patch of the area is being allowed for industrial activity, the entire landscape will be adversely affected. Supplanted by a historically strong antiliquor movement in the region, the people urged the government authorities to cancel the lease agreement, if any, made with IDCO as the conversion, dereservation and transfer of land was blatantly illegal. In November, 2018, protesters clashed with the police, in which 13 persons were arrested. Soon after, following a recommendation of the Revenue Divisional Commissioner, the chief minister finally scrapped the project and ordered the beer factory to be relocated.
Demand/Contention of the Affected Community
Demand for compensation, Refusal to give up land for the project, Demand to retain/protect access to common land/resources, Opposition against environmental degradation, Complaint against procedural violations
Government Bodies Involved in the Conflict:
Corporate Parties Involved in the Conflict:
P&A Bottlers Private Limited
Other Parties Involved in the Conflict:
Legislations Involved in the Conflict:
Forest and Scheduled Area Governance Laws, Environmental Laws, Other
Legal Processes and Loopholes Enabling the Conflict:
Non-implementation/violation of the FRA, Violation of environmental laws
Name(s) of Court(s)
Original Application no. 174/ 2017/ EZ
Nature of Protest
Advocacy (for inclusion in courts), Protests/marches
Major Human Rights Violations Related to the Conflict:
Reported Details of the Violation:
In November, 2018, protesters clashed with the police, in which 13 persons were arrested.
Date of Violation
Location of Violation
Has the Conflict Ended?
When did it end?
Why did the conflict end?