Ujh Multipurpose Project in J&K Gets Centre's Nod, To Displace 3,700 Families

Reported by

Rabiya BashirLand Conflict Watch

Last updated on

May 24, 2021

Location of Conflict

Dharalta and Dungara villages

Samba district, Billawar town in Kathua district


Reason or Cause of Conflict

Multipurpose Dam



People Affected by Conflict

Land Area Affected (in Hectares)



Starting Year



Jammu and Kashmir



The Jammu and Kashmir administration has set the ball rolling to transfer hundreds of hectares of ecofragile forestland for the construction of the Ujh multipurpose project (hydropower, irrigation and drinking) in Jammus Kathua district. The geographyaltering project is being constructed on Ujh, a tributary of the Ravi river. The project has got Stage 1 clearance. We (forest department) will divert over 680 hectares of land while the rest is state and private land, K. Ramesh Kumar, chief conservator of forests, Jammu, told the media. Over two lakh trees have been marked by field officers in Billawar, Kathua and Samba forest divisions that will be axed to pave way for the ambitious project, the Government of Indias forest advisory committee noted in a 2020 report. The project received recommendation for environmental and forest clearances in December 2020 from expert panels of the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change. Professor R.K. Ganjoo, who teaches at the Department of Geology in the University of Jammu, explains that forests act as a sink for excess carbon in the atmosphere. Extensive deforestation disturbs the carbon cycle, which leads to climate change, he said. The project is likely to displace around 3,700 families in 52 villages, based on numbers from the 2011 Census. The two villages of Dharalta and Dungara will be completely submerged. The project site is located 10 kilometres from the Jasrota Wildlife Sanctuary, home to some critically endangered species. Environmentalists and activists have voiced their concerns about the Ujh project. There will be ecological and microclimate changes due to the denuding of forests. In the coming years, people will face a lot of problems during summer. Besides the loss of forest cover, it will also gravely impact wildlife, Avtar Singh from the Department of Geology/Remote Sensing & GIS at the University of Jammu, told the media.

Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Opposition against environmental degradation, Refusal to give up land for the project

Region Classification


Type of Land


Type of Common Land

Forest and Non-Forest

Total investment involved (in Crores):


Type of investment:

Cost of Project

Year of Estimation

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, Other

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:

Violation of environmental laws, Non-implementation/violation of the FRA

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

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

Media based activism/alternative media

Government Departments Involved in the Conflict:

Forest department; Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change; Samba district administration

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?

Name, Designation and Comment of Corporate Authorities Approached

Other Parties Involved in the Conflict:

Resources Related to Conflict

  • News Articles Related to the Conflict:
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  • Links Related to the Conflict:
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Documented By

Rabiya Bashir

Reviewed By

Rabiya Bashir

Updated By

Rabiya Bashir

Edited By

Rabiya BashirLand Conflict Watch

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