Angul, July 16: Land losers demanding better relief and rehabilitation package today paralysed production and transportation of coal for nearly eight hours.
The agitation was launched the state government’s imposition of the Orissa Essential Service Maintenance Act (OESMA) at the Talcher coalfield last month to prevent strikes.
The two-day agitation call was called off after the district administration assured the protesters of action.
The state government in its order issued on June 8 had invoked OESMA in Talcher to stop agitations that affect the movement of coal and power production at power stations within and outside the state.
Today’s strike was the first agitation launched by the affected local residents. The agitation brought to a halt work at all the eight coalmines and offices besides bringing to a standstill coal movement on rail and road.
The protesters want a meeting of the Rehabilitation and Peripheral Development Advisory Committee to be convened.
“There was neither any coal production in the coalfield nor any rake movement. Coal transportation on road was also stopped,” said a colliery officer, who did not want to be named.
Local MLA Braja Kishore Pradhan, who led the strike, said: “People affected by Mahanadi Coalfield Limited, Nalco and NTPC power plant at Kaniha are getting a raw deal. People want .”
“We held talks with the MLA and the striking villagers this afternoon and told them that the meeting they demanded would take place next month after central range revenue divisional commissioner Arabindh Padhi takes over charge of the northern division,” said sub-collector of Talcher Sitansu Rout.