Again Police Repression in Dhinkia


Around 2pm on 20th Dec, 2021, the villagers of Dhinkia made a massive demonstration against the state and police repression at Mahala village border. Suddenly police forces entered Dhinkia village from back side and started thrashing and beating people. Some villagers sustained severe injuries. The police have arbitrarily arrested two persons Mr. Ajodhya Swain and Ms. Milirani Swain without any reason. Those who sustained injuries include Natha Samal, Prakash Jena,Bhramar Das and Lokanath Swain.

The administration is using all means at its end to demoralize and divide people. Abusing law and implicating dissenting/protesting affected people in false and fabricated cases seems to have become an acceptable norm these days. No one questions the authorities, not even opposition forces. People have been abandoned to fight for survival and justice in Dhinkia area and elsewhere in the state too.

Normal day do day lives and activities of people have been hampered due to police presence in proposed industrial and mining project areas. Hence we demand that administration should take steps for immediate withdrawal of police force from Dhinkia and ensure that normalcy is restored soon.

A few years back, POSCO – the South Korean steel major – was forced to withdraw from its proposed steel project in that area due to stiff resistance by the people. After POSCO’s withdrawal, the Government of Odisha put the forcibly acquired land in the Land Bank without returning to the people. Subsequently, the same patch of land was transferred to Jindal Steel Works Ltd.(JSW) for setting up of an integrated steel plant, a captive power plant and a cement factory. When on 20th December, 2019 the Odisha State Pollution Control Board conducted the mandatory public hearing voices of protest were heard against the proposed JSW project. People continue to protest since then. Between August and November 2021, the district administration initiated a series of actions – fresh notification for further acquisition of land, hearings at different Panchayat headquarters to ascertain people’s grievances regarding JSW project and trifurcation of Dhinkia revenue village – with heavy police arrangement. Local people raised their voices against these actions.

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