Thursday, July 23, 2009

Chitrakonda on the boil

MALKANGIRI, 22 JULY: Thousands of tribals continued to lay siege at the tehsil office at Chitrakonda and paralyse normal life in the area for the seventh day today as attempts for a negotiated settlement by district officials failed.
The tribals, including women and children have been occupying the market place and streets at Chitrakonda demanding immediate fulfillment of their demands which include basic amenities like PDS supply, electricity etc. They threatened to disrupt power supply from Balimela reservoir, if the government continues to ignore their demands.
The tribals belong to K Guma block which is a cut-off area de-linked due to the reservoir. There is no land route to the villages under this block and they used boats to come to Chitrakonda.
The agitating villagers have been saying ~ we provide electricity to the rest and we suffer in darkness, no official ever comes to our villages and essential commodities are not available, they decried.
They have refused to accept assurances given by the district administration and now want the state authorities to talk to them directly. It may be noted here that the Opposition members had raised this issue in the Assembly a couple of days ago and cautioned the government.
The area is a naxal infested zone and they may take advantage of the situation. Strangely, chief minister Mr Naveen Patnaik who provided a detailed counter to the Opposition charge of handling of Naxal problem in the state, did not touch upon the Chitrakonda agitation point.;sns

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