GAIL to hold hearing today on pipeline

Thirty people from Ammunje village in Bantwal taluk will lodge their objections against Gas Authority India Limited's (GAIL) gas pipeline project on Thursday.

GAIL's proposed Kochi-Koottanad-Bangalore-Mangalore gas pipeline project will pass through the land of many people, including farmers, in 16 villages in Bantwal and Mangalore taluks. Villages include Thokur, Kenjar, Malavuru, Adyapadi, Muluru, Kandavara, Arkula and Pavoor in Manglaore taluk, and Meremanjal, Balepuni, Kairangala, Kurnadu Pajir and Ammunje in Bantwal taluk.

Jeevraj Shetty, who owns 38 acres of land at Ammunje, told The Hindu that it would be best if the project did not materialise.

Arecanut and coconut had been cultivated on 25 per cent of the land, while the rest was hillock.

“The pipeline will pass through coconut and arecanut plantations. All of it will be spoilt. Once the pipeline is laid, I cannot grow the palms back.

Already, it is so difficult to manage the crop,” Mr. Shetty said.

He said that he was looking forward to the hearing as it was “not possible to remain silent”.

The pond and wells on his land would also be affected and he would have to look for an alternative source of water.

More seriously, he said, he was afraid of a disaster involving the pipeline, adding that a portion of it would be laid on the seabed.

The land will not be acquired per se, rather GAIL will acquire the Right of User under the Petroleum Pipelines (Acquisition of Right of User in Land) Act, 1962. However, laying pipeline itself is governed by the Petroleum and Mineral Pipelines Act, 1962.

After the pipeline is laid, the owner of the land can revert the land to what it was being used earlier.

No plantations

However, rules do not permit planting of trees, construction of permanent structures, or excavation such as digging a well on the land where the pipeline passes.

Inquiry will be conducted at Ammunje village first, followed by the last one at Panemangalore in Bantwal taluk.

These are the last of seven inquiries conducted from October 20 to hear 227 objections lodged by the people against the project. The previous hearings were held in Bajpe, Gurupura, Mangalore, and Meremanjal (Bantwal taluk).

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Printable version | Apr 2, 2020 10:24:42 PM |

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