Hyderabad: A ‘maha dharna’ by oustees of Mid Manair Dam in Vemulawada town in Telangana’s Rajanna Sircilla district triggered tension on Monday.
Demanding the state government to meet their long-pending demands, the oustees staged a protest in Vemulawada.
As the oustees from various villages were reaching the town for the ‘maha dharna’ organised by the Oustees Joint Action Committee police stopped them at Nandi Kaman area. Agitated over the police action, the oustees sat in protest there.
There was heated argument between police and the people affected by the project, leading to tension for some time. Some of the protesters sat on the road blocking the way for police vehicles.
The oustees, who were carrying banners and placards and raising slogans, alleged that the government had not paid them total compensation for the lands acquired by them. They said they were not provided double bedroom houses as promised by Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao.
Police arrested the protesters and whisked them away to police stations.
Land acquisition for Mid Manair, a balancing reservoir across Manair River, began in 2006. Many oustees are yet to receive the compensation they were promised.
Meanwhile, opposition Congress and BJP condemned the arrests and declared their support to oustees.
Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) president A. Revanth Reddy said the arrests of Mid Manair oustees and the highhandedness by the police was highly condemnable.
Revanth Reddy said that instead of meeting the demands of oustees, the government was resorting to their indiscriminate arrests. He demanded the immediate release of those arrested.
The Congress leader said Chief Minister KCR should fulfill his promises by implementing the Relief and Rehabilitation package and by constructing double bedroom houses for those who lost their lands.
BJP state president Bandi Sanjay also condemned the arrest of oustees. Describing their demands as justified, he said instead of fulfilling its promises, the KCR government was resorting to use of force. He said the days of KCR government have been numbered.
Mid Manair Dam Oustees Joint Action Committee leaders recalled that Chief Minister KCR had promised to build double bedroom houses at a cost of Rs 5.04 lakh for those who have been displaced. They claim that the CM had also assured of employment, but nothing has materialised so far.
Oustees lamented that though they had sacrificed their family lands and were displaced, their source of living was snatched and the government was yet to fulfil its promise.