Tata Steel has resumed construction work at its project site in Kalinganagar in Jajpur district following the withdrawal of dharna by the local villagers, who were on agitation for last two days demanding jobs in the project.
“The local villagers, some of whom are already engaged as contractual labourers by our contractors in the construction work, had concerns about getting permanent jobs in the project. We have explained them that once the plant starts functioning, we will provide jobs to one from each displaced family as per the resettlement and rehabilitation policy of the government,” said a senior official of the company.
The angry villagers had locked the entrance gates of the Kalinganagar plant on Wednesday and Thursday, thereby blocking entry of vehicles and other staffs to the plant area, where the construction of the six million tonne plant is going on.
The protesters, who were displaced for the project, were also demanding extension of the time period for determination of eligible persons for getting jobs at the plant.
As per Kalinganagar Rehabilitation and Resettlement Policy, Tata Steel had agreed to provide jobs to one person of each displaced family. It had considered persons who had attained 18 years age by January 2005 as a separate family and had promised them jobs.
The displaced persons were demanding that the children who were minor at the time of preparation of list of eligible persons have attained 18 years now and should be included in the list.
Tata Steel said the extension of dates is the sole right of the state government and would take necessary steps after discussion with the government officials, after which the villagers withdrew the strike.
The company is expected to commission its flat steel product plant by 2014.