The Metabodeli Iron Ore Mine in Kanker district was leased to Neco Jaysawal Industries Limited. The project received environmental clearance in 2009, but the tribespeople vehemently opposed it. Originally, the Ministry of Mines leased an area of 25 hectares with 0.05 MTPA production capacity. In 2013, the company applied for an expansion of the capacity to 0.20 MTPA. For this, it also applied for acquiring 50 hectares of forestland and an additional seven hectares for the safety zone. In October that year, the environment ministry granted inprinciple Stage1 approval to the forestland diversion. In 2015, the company received an approval to expand the capacity of the mine. Meanwhile, in the same year, the company again submitted a proposal to further increase the production capacity to 1 MTPA. The expansion plan and diversion of forestland met with opposition from the residents of the surrounding villages. Until at least 2015, the Naxalites also threatened the project when they announced they would not allow a private mining company to extract the natural resources from the region. In January, they put up banners and pasted pamphlets openly warning the company. They had allegedly set afire equipment for infrastructure development. The Naxalites also discouraged the local youths from taking up labour jobs in the mine. In April, the Naxalites reportedly kidnapped four mining officials, who were later released. In another violent incident in October, the Naxalites burnt over 10 trucks in the mining area and assaulted the truck drivers and project officials. There was an exchange of firing between the Naxalites and the security forces. The villagers voiced their concerns over the grim situation in a public hearing on October 5, 2016. They accused the company of not delivering on the rehabilitation package promised when the project started and of neither providing employment as promised. They were concerned about the environmental impact of the mining activities, which would also affect their livelihood. The police had to intervene to pacify the protesters. Subsequently, the mine became operational at the previously approved capacity. In November 2016, the company submitted a new proposal to divert 57 hectares of forestland for the mine closure plan. But the environment ministry rejected the proposal in September 2017. The villagers also launched protests against the redwater problem due to mining excavations. They claimed that ironrich water running from the mines has severely affected their agricultural fields, leading to a decline in the quality and quantity of their produce. To the relief of the villagers, the company closed the mine in 2020 following the COVID19 lockdown restrictions.
Demand for employment, Opposition against environmental degradation
Has the Conflict Ended?
When did it end?
Why did the conflict end?
Categories of Legislations Involved in the Conflict
Forest and Scheduled Area Governance Laws, Environmental Laws
Whether claims/objections were made as per procedure in the relevant statute
What was the claim(s)/objection(s) raised by the community? What was the decision of the concerned government department?
Legal Processes and Loopholes Enabling the Conflict:
Violation of environmental laws, Non-implementation/violation of the PESA, Violation of free prior informed consent
Out of Court
Status of Case In Court
Whether any adjudicatory body was approached
Name of the adjudicatory body
Name(s) of the Court(s)
Major Human Rights Violations Related to the Conflict:
Whether criminal law was used against protestors
Official name of the criminal law. Did the case reach trial?
Reported Details of the Violation:
Date of Violation
Location of Violation
Nature of Protest
Armed protests , Property damage/arson, Objections as part of official procedures , Protests/marches
Government Departments Involved in the Conflict:
State Government of Chhattisgarh
PSUs Involved in the Conflict:
Did LCW Approach Government Authorities for Comments?
Name, Designation and Comment of the Government Authorities Approached
Corporate Parties Involved in the Conflict:
Neco Jaysawal Industries Limited
Did LCW Approach Corporate Parties for Comments?
Name, Designation and Comment of Corporate Authorities Approached
Other Parties Involved in the Conflict: