Madurai

People with vested interests are misguiding farmers against Kambur pipeline: IOCL

Persons with vested interests are misguiding farmers against the laying of underground gas pipeline of Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL) at Kambur village, Melur block, Madurai district. Landowners are not directly opposing the gas pipeline, said officials of IOCL, here on Saturday.

K. Srinivas, Deputy General Manager of IOCL, Madurai, along with S. Saravanan, Deputy Collector and competent authority of IOCL’s project, addressed mediapersons to explain the recent project undertaken by IOCL in the region.

Mr. Srinivas said that the Central government was aiming to increase the usage of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) in the country. D. Ajith Kumar, Manager (Constructions), IOCL, said that a project which envisages the supply of LNG from the IOCL’s terminal at Ennore to other parts of the State is currently underway. A pipeline which will run for around 1,425 kilometres will supply LNG from Ennore to Bengaluru; and also to Thoothukudi via Madurai.

In Madurai, the pipeline will be laid for 56 kilometres across 26 villages in Melur and Madurai East blocks. Currently, work is underway in six villages in Melur block.

However, farmers in Kambur village of Melur block protested against the laying of a gas pipeline in farmlands with fully-grown paddy crop and chased away contractors who came to dig trenches to lay the underground pipeline.

“The farmers were misguided and thought that a road would be laid inside the farmlands and that wells would be constructed. We explained in detail to the farmers about the project and the safety standards that were followed in laying of the underground gas pipeline. But, a few people with vested interests are misdirecting the farmers,” said Mr. Srinivas.

The IOCL had already laid a 680-kilometre-long pipeline in 2005 from Manali to Kappalur in Madurai. The officials obtained a Right of Use for these lands by paying compensation in 2005. “The new gas pipeline will be laid along the existing pipeline and an enhanced compensation will be paid to the farmers this time too,” said Mr. Srinivas.

LNG is an environment friendly, less expensive and safe alternative. Distribution of LNG through pipelines is a viable and economical option, he added. “The pipelines are being laid following the highest safety standards. There will be proper systems present to regularly undertake maintenance of the pipeline and to rectify issues immediately,” he added.

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Printable version | Jan 25, 2021 11:21:12 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Madurai/people-with-vested-interests-are-misguiding-farmers-against-kambur-pipeline-iocl/article33200104.ece

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