Hooghly Residents in West Bengal Oppose Railway Project Over Water Body

Reported by

Mitali Biswas

Legal Data by

Edited by

Updated by

Published on

March 22, 2017

March 22, 2017

Updated on

March 22, 2017

Location of Conflict

Goghat Bhaba Dighi

Hooghly

Reason or Cause of Conflict

Railways

(

)

People Affected by Conflict

600

Households Affected by Conflict

Land Area Affected (in Hectares)

7

ha

Starting Year

2010

State

West Bengal

Sector

Infrastructure

Eastern Railways, one of the zones of Indian Railways, proposed to extend a railway track from Tarakeshwar in Hooghly district to Bishnupur in Bankura district. The new track is being built in an area where a large water body, the Bhabhadighi tank, currently stands. The pond will need to be filled to allow construction work for the track. The residents of Goghat village have opposed** **the move as they believe construction work will ruin the water body. They staged a protest on March 16, 2017, when workers started filling the water body with mud to lay the railway line. The villagers claim that they are not against the railway line as it will only facilitate their travel. However, they do not want this at the cost of the pond. The 600odd people living in the village depend on the water body for everyday use, and about 51 families completely depend on it for fishing. The protest turned violent as residents torched some vehicles. Eventually, the Rapid Action Force had to be summoned to control the situation. To date, the residents remain adamant that no railway line will be allowed over the water body, and of the 268 fish farmers who depend on the pond, some have refused compensation. The Hooghly department has come up with an alternative plot where it is willing to build a pond as a replacement and has offered nine acres of land to build the pond. But simmering tensions between the villagers and the government have continued to keep the project at a standstill. The project summary, dated December 3, 2020, states that no resolution has been reached on the matter and that work has not started due to nonavailability of land.

Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Demand to retain/protect access to common land/resources

Other Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Region Classification

Rural

Type of Land

Common

Type of Common Land

Non-Forest (Other than Grazing Land)

Total investment involved (in Crores):

1619.48

Type of investment:

Revised Investment

Year of Estimation

Page Number In Investment Document:

Has the Conflict Ended?

When did it end?

Why did the conflict end?

Categories of Legislations Involved in the Conflict

Land Acquisition Laws, Constitutional Law

Legislations/Policies Involved

Railways Act, 1989
Section 20A [This section grants the Centre power to acquire land for a railway project]; Section 20-O [Under this section, the National Rehabilitation and Resettlement Policy, 2007, shall apply to project affected families]
National Rehabilitation and Resettlement Policy, 2007
Chapter IV [Under this chapter, the government is required to carry out a social impact assessment of any proposed project which results in the involuntary displacement of more than 400 families, and lays down the procedure for such SIA]
Constitution of India, 1950
Article 21 [Right to livelihood as enshrined in the right to life]; Article 39(a) [The state shall direct its policy towards ensuring that citizens have the right to an adequate means of livelihood]
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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:

Controversial land acquisition by the government

Legal Status:

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)

Case Number

Main Reasoning/Decision of court

Major Human Rights Violations Related to the Conflict:

No items found.

Whether criminal law was used against protestors:

Reported Details of the Violation:

Date of Violation

Location of Violation

Nature of Protest

Development of a network or collective

Objections as part of official procedures

Refusal of compensation

Government Departments Involved in the Conflict:

Eastern Railways

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:

Did LCW Approach Corporate Parties for Comments?

Communities/Local Organisations in the Conflict:

Resources Related to Conflict

  • News Articles Related to the Conflict:
  • Documents Related to the Conflict:
  • Links Related to the Conflict:

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