Eight motorcycles were set on fire on Wednesday by local tribals

Jajpur: At least eight motorcycles were set on fire on Wednesday by local tribals at Kalinga steel hub when efforts were made to raise a boundary wall of Tata Steel, which had proposed to set up a 6mtpa steel mill here, police said.

As nearly 100 tribals with their traditional weapons rushed to the construction site opposing the move, the contractors left the place, they said.

Though no FIR was registered in this connection at the police station, Jajpur SP D.S. Kuttey and District Magistrate D.K. Das said that the company had not given prior information to the administration before re-starting construction work in the trouble area.

Unable to undertake construction of the boundary wall on its own due to opposition from tribals, police said, the company had assigned the job to eight local youths to construct 100 meter of boundary wall each.

The Visthapan Birodhi Jana Manch (BVJM), which had been opposing displacement in the steel hub since 14 people were killed in police firing on January 2, 2006, blamed the government alleging that the government was helping the company. VBJM Secretary Rabindra Jarika said that they were assured by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik that no construction work would be allowed in the place where police had opened fire on innocent tribals. – PTI