BERHAMPUR: The villagers of Baulajholi panchayat in Ganjam district are continuing protest against the stone quarry in their area which has become an environmental menace for them.
They held demonstration for this demand. They had also blocked the road that passes through the panchayat a few days ago for the same demand. The local tehsildar had to rush to the spot to pacify the villagers. The stone quarry that operates in the area has been leased out and licensed by the State Government. So, the administration had to intervene to avoid law and order situation.
According to Chittaranjan Sahu, who is leading the villagers of the panchayat against the stone quarry this quarry has affected the livelihood of a number of families of the area who were earlier making grinding stones for household use using the granite blocks found in the area. They have lost their livelihood due to leasing out of the granite belts near the villages to the private company to operate the stone quarry.
Mr Sahu said apart from it they were affected by the large scale pollution caused by the mechanized crushing of stones. The amount of dust generated by the crushers and the blasting has become a major health hazard. The crop and cashew plantations are also affected as the stone dust floating in the air gets deposited on the plants affecting their productivity, the villagers said. They have handed over a memorandum to the administration demanding cancellation of lease of the stone quarry.