Ulwe villagers made to vacate homes for two hours daily

Residents of Siddhart Nagar in Ulwe sit out in the open on Friday after CIDCO officials ordered them to vacate their homes during work at the Navi Mumbai airport site.  

The residents of Siddhart Nagar in Ulwe will have to spend two hours out in the open every day after CIDCO officials ordered them to vacate their homes during blasting work at the site of the Navi Mumbai international airport project.

Project Affected Persons (PAPs) from the village have been demanding CIDCO officials to rehabilitate them. Hanumant Yatre, a villager, said, “Why are we being subjected to this torture. We have to stand in the scorching sun for two hours every day so that we don’t come in the way of the blasting work for the airport. Why can’t they rehabilitate us properly instead? We don’t seem to exist for the officials.”

Meanwhile, CIDCO officials claimed the move was a precautionary measure that was taken to avoid untoward incidents during the blasting work. A CIDCO offcial said, “The work on hill cutting and blasting on the project site takes place in two shifts — between 1 p.m. and 2 p.m.; and from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. — every day. We have asked the residents to stay away from the site to ensure their safety.”

The order has also affected students of an anganwadi run by the Rotary Club. The students had to vacate their school premises during blasting work in the afternoon.

Prakash Jadhav, another villager, said, “Women, children and the elderly have been hit the most by CIDCO’s order. In the afternoons, children are at school, women are preparing lunch in the kitchens and the elderly seek respite from the heat outside. But all of us have been asked to leave our homes and forced to stand in the sweltering heat.”

Mr. Jadhav said that villagers stalled work at the site after five villagers, one CIDCO official and six GVK employees were injured in a landslide triggered by blasting work on January 6. He said, “However, the work resumed on Thursday and we are facing humiliation and living in fear.”

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Printable version | Jun 11, 2021 10:47:49 AM |

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