Keri villagers on chain hunger strike to stop stone quarrying


Residents of Keri-Ponda are on a chain hunger strike to oppose the deputy collector’s order granting permission to lift mined stones from a quarry at Amadi-Keri.
Opposing the order, several villagers including women on Tuesday decided to block transportation of the mined stones.
 It may be recalled that the villagers have been opposing the stone quarry and crusher operations, on grounds that the project is illegal.
The villagers claimed that the stone crusher was illegally operated in private property without the consent of the property owner and the stone quarry has caused irreparable damage to the environment.
“Surprisingly, even the local panchayat did not grant any NOC’s to the controversial project. It’s high time that government takes a stern action or else people will be forced to take law into their hands,” warned United Tribals Alliance Association (UTAA) Convenor Govind Gaude.
The agitation has received the support of the Priol BJP unit, UTTA and Keri Panchayat.
“We have decided not to allow transportation of mined stones to protest against the Ponda deputy collector’s order,” said Gaude.
“It is surprising that the order was issued within 10 days after the quarry operator filed a complaint, but authorities are least bothered on the several other complaints filed by the villagers against the illegal stone quarry and stone crusher,” added Gaude. [H]