LAKHIMPUR: In the wake of the declaration of resuming the construction work of the Subansiri Lower Hydroelectric Project (SLHP) by NHPC executive director Arvind Bhat, strong reaction was seen in Lakhimpur among the anti-big dam activist organizations in Lakhimpur district again.
Regarding the issue, the Lakhimpur district unit of Asom Jatiyatabadi Yuva Chatra Parishad initiated agitation programme once again in the district on Wednesday. The activists of the organization burnt the effigy of the executive director in North Lakhimpur town at Court Tiniali, strongly protesting against the resumption of construction works of the contentious big river dam project.
The executive director, denying the apprehensions and fear of the people of the State and the massive protest programmes of the anti-big dam activist organizations staged during the last eight year period, on Tuesday reportedly declared that the construction work of the SLHP was resumed from that day. As per his declaration, the NHPC has fixed a deadline of completing the project within the next four years and to generate electric power from April, 2023.
Further, the executive director allegedly termed the agitations programmes initiated by the anti-big dam activist organizations as symbolic protest and claimed that the people of the State were in favour of the project. He further denied the apprehensions regarding the collapse of the river dam, which is set up in highly seismic zone, due to the jolt of earthquake. He also declared that 50 per cent construction of the project had already been completed along with the security measures of the downstream areas of the Subansiri river valley.
By staging the protest programme, AJYCP strongly opposed his statements and declarations, terming them baseless. The organization alleged that security measures of the downstream areas were still not executed as he said. Further, the dignitaries of the organization vehemently condemned the executive director for terming the anti-big dam agitations as symbolic protest. They declared that their organization was still initiating democratic protest programmes against the controversial project.
“We have the potential to intensify our agitation against the project and to fight till the last drop of our blood,” said Lakhimpur unit AJYCP general secretary Jyoti Das at the protest venue. The organization demanded the intervention of Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal and the State Government over the controversial project.