NTPC Violates FRA in Jharkhand by Starting Coal Mining in Pakri Barwadih

Reported by

Nupur SonarLand Conflict Watch

Last updated on

February 12, 2021

Location of Conflict

Barkagaon

Keredari

Hazaribagh

This is a Left Wing Extremism Affected District

Reason or Cause of Conflict

Coal Mining

(

)

People Affected by Conflict

41976

Land Area Affected (in Hectares)

1636

ha

Starting Year

2004

State

Jharkhand

Sector

Mining

Protests against the loss of fertile, multi-crop land have raged on in Barkagaon block of Hazaribagh district since 2004, when the Pakri Barwadih coal block was allocated to the National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC). The main site is located on forestland and private agricultural land belonging to 23 villages. The affected families are opposing the project for not consulting with them while acquiring the land for the project. The land was acquired under the Coal Bearing Areas (Acquisition and Development) Act, 1957, which contains no provision to consult affected communities, or seek the free, prior and informed consent of the affected people.  In 2009, NTPC applied for forest clearance to mine 1026 hectares of forest land. Aruna Chandrasekhar, senior researcher at Amnesty International India said, "NTPCs mine received clearance to use forest land without adequate consultation with communities who depend on these forests for their livelihoods. However, NTPC's application for Forest Clearance shows letters of consent from 17 villages by forest Rights committee of the villages who are not representative bodies and their approval cannot substitute for Gramsabha approval. When Amnesty International approached NTPC for response on the allegations, they said, " Forest clearance has been granted by MOEF after the compliance of all the provisions under Forest Clearance Act, 1980.  Similarly, the private land was mainly acquired under the Coal Bearing Areas Acquisition and Development Act, 1957 and some under the Land Acquisition Act, 2013 for building company offices, rehabilitation colonies, etc. Both the Acts do not ask for consent of community in cases of coal bearing areas. In November 2013, the people from the villages led a Koyla Satyagraha in which they decided to dig out coal deposit beneath their lands on their own. They would sell the coal to traders and pay royalty to the gram sabha, suggesting it as an alternative model of mining in the region. In August 2015, the protests turned violent, when the farmers confronted the police officials who responded with tear gas shells and shot 22 rounds of bullets into the crowd. The affected families haven't accepted the compensation given by NTPC. The NTPC revised the compensation to 20 lakh per acre from 7 lakh per acre. However, the villagers say that it is an inadequate compensation for their land and the they should be given four times the market value of land as per the Land Acquisition Act, 2013. In September 2019, Virendra Kumar, an activist from Jharkhand, said in a news report, Post 2016, the coal mining plant has been functional and is expanding at the cost of the lives and livelihoods of tribal and environment. The latest attack (in September 2019) from the firm has been the forcible demolition of over 10 houses in Jugra (one of the affected village in Hazaribagh district) for the creation of heavy duty conveyor belts.

Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Region Classification

Rural

Type of Land

Both

Type of Common Land

Forest and Non-Forest, Non-Forest (Grazing Land), Non-Forest (Other than Grazing Land)

Total investment involved (in Crores):

33000

Type of investment:

Investment Made

Year of Estimation

Has the Conflict Ended?

When did it end?

Why did the conflict end?

Categories of Legislations Involved in the Conflict

Forest Rights Act of 2006

Legislations/Policies Involved

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:

Legal Status:

Status of Case In Court

Whether any adjudicatory body was approached

Name of the adjudicatory body

Name(s) of the Court(s)

Case Number

Major Human Rights Violations Related to the Conflict:

Attempted killing, Arrest/detention/imprisonment

Whether criminal law was used against protestors

Official name of the criminal law. Did the case reach trial?

Reported Details of the Violation:

A protest in August 2015, led by local politician Nirmala Devi, outside the rehabilitation colony turned violent. Six persons were injured when the police opened fire on the crowd, including a journalist. . On October 1, 2016, another protest in Pakri Barwadih village turned violent, where four protesters were killed and several injured in police firing. According to activists working in the area, several false cases have been filed against those who oppose the project.

Date of Violation

Location of Violation

Nature of Protest

Involvement of national and international NGOs, Land occupation, Protests/marches

Government Departments Involved in the Conflict:

Goverment of Jharkhand

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:

Thriveni Sainik Mining Private Limited

Did LCW Approach Corporate Parties for Comments?

Name, Designation and Comment of Corporate Authorities Approached

Other Parties Involved in the Conflict:

Karanpura Bachao Sangharsh Samiti, Janmabhoomi Raksha Sangharsh Samiti, Buddhijeevi Manch, Ekta Parishad

Resources Related to Conflict

  • News Articles Related to the Conflict:
  • Documents Related to the Conflict:
  • Links Related to the Conflict:
No Images Available

Documented By

Nupur Sonar

Reviewed By

Nupur Sonar

Updated By

Nupur Sonar

Edited By

Nupur SonarLand Conflict Watch
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