Their refusal to vacate the site has led to a tough existence
Udupi: People living in the Nagarjuna Project site here have only tales of woe to narrate about the treatment meted out by Nagarjuna Power Corporation Ltd (NPCL). The project site for the 1,015 MW coal-based Nagarjuna Power Project is located at Yellur, about 25 km from Udupi.
Nine families (according to the Nandikur Janajagriti Samiti; the NPCL says only four families stay there), have refused to move out of the project site. They live in an area fenced with barbed wire and is guarded round-the-clock. Lakshmi Multi, who is a member of one such family, said, “We have one and a half acres of land. Now the company plans to level our field. Our land produced 64 “murras” of rice a year, which was enough for our family of 14 members. We have told the company that we cannot give up our land. If we do, what will we eat?” Lakshmi’s father Somayya Mulya, said, “We have to sign the register kept by the company, to enter and exit the site. .” Gopi Pujarti, a widow, who owns two acres land said that she carries a sickle with her to protect herself and her land. She said, “I have grown 100 coconut palms on my land and I survive on its returns. MP Manorama Madhwaraj, who was present at the site, said, “The NPCL is troubling the people. It has dug the land around their homes. How will these people walk around at night? The company has restricted their movements.”