The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Fear of accident sparks protest

Jamshedpur, Aug. 22: Tension gripped Sunderhatu bustee in Govindpur as residents forced Jamshedpur Utility Services Company (Jusco) officials from installing high tension line through the bustee.

The residents said that about 60 families reside at the bustee and they ran a risk of electrocution if the overhead high-tension line passed through the place. Jusco officials said the houses were set up unauthorisedly and they had the approval from the local administration to remove the houses.

About 1,000 people stalled Jusco’s work. Jusco officials, with executive magistrate of steel city Nirija Kumari and armed police personnel from East Singhbhum district, came to the spot.

The ambitious project of Jusco would supply power to Adityapur industrial area and Seraikela-Kharsawan district and they wanted to draw 33,000 KVA line from Tata Power in Adityapur. And the line was supposed to pass through the bustee.

The protesters asked Jusco to put up an additional tower on the hill and draw the powerline from it. But the company is opposed to the idea as another tower would not help them.

Dhalbhum sub-divisional officer (SDO) Ganesh Kumar and deputy superintendent of police (Jamshedpur) Madhusudan Bari reached the spot and tried to talk to the residents to allow Jusco to proceed with the work. But the people, supported by a section of Jharkhand Mukti Morcha leaders, were adamant.

It was decided that a tripartite meeting between Jusco management, local administration and representatives of Sunderhatu bustee would be held at SDO’s office on August 26.

“I have convened a meeting of residents of the place and Jusco management on August 26. I hope the matter would be sorted amicably and the issue would be settled,” said Kumar.

JMM leader Fanni Bhusan Mahto said that people would co-operate if the company compensates them after removing them from the hill.

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