From A Reporter
SHILLONG, June 8: Residents of Thieddieng village has accused the acting headman of the village and Syiem of Hima Sohra of bulldozing the opinion of the people as majority of residents of the village is against the (85MW) Mawphu Hydro Electric Project (MHEP) stage II.
The villagers has further stressed that they will continue to oppose the project undertaken by NEEPCO, as out of the 110 hectare of land required for the implementation of the project around 93 hectare belonging to the residents of Thieddieng village will be affected.
Addressing reporters in the city on Thursday, a resident of the village, Joborstarsing Sohtun said, “If we allow NEEPCO to take over our lands for the implementation of the project then the farming lands which the people are dependent upon for their livelihood will disappear.”
He also said the villagers were uware that their agricultural lands were included in the project until the day NEEPCO started survey work.
“In a recent public hearing on May 16 earlier this year, the villagers were vociferous as the Syiem of Hima Sohra had not taken into confidence the opinion of the people over the project because if implemented around 74 household will be affected and displaced,” Sohtun said.
When asked on compensation for the affected villagers, he informed that at a public meeting held on May 16, NEEPCO had offered Rs. 25, 000 towards the displaced households with an addition of Rs. 2000 every month for the next 20 years and one family member from each affected household will gain employment.
“Even if we get compensation but what will the people do with Rs. 2000 per month at this present day and age this is the reason why the people of Thieddieng village are opposing this project,” he said.
Sohtun informed that the matter was earlier also highlighted to Ardent Miller Basaiawmoit the then CEM of Khasi Hills Autonomous District Council (KHADC).