Friday, November 11, 2016

Purandar on a boil: Airport land survey begins amid farmers’ protests, 1,300 detained

Tension prevailed for better part of the day on Thursday in some villages of Purandar taluka in Pune district as government team descended here to check the suitability of the land for the Pune international airport.
As many as 1,300 protesting farmers were detained by the police as the villagers sought to block the land survey.
High drama was witnessed when a cavalcade of vehicles carrying government officials and police personnel landed at the vacant land close to Munjwadi village — one of the seven villages zeroed-in by the government for the proposed international airport. All along the route from Saswad, groups of farmers stopped the cavalcade from heading to the spot. However, they failed in their endeavour. But the moment, an array of vehicles, including riot control van and an ambulance landed at the spot, farmers and their families rushed to the spot and shouted slogans against the government and the airport plan. Farmers with black flags stopped the survey team. For next hour-an-half in the blazing sun, the farmers sat on a dharna. The farmers were from seven villages of Ekhatpur, Pargaon Memane, Khanavdi, Munjawdi, Rajewadi, Waghapur and Amble.
The farmers were addressed by their leaders such as Ganesh Memane, a young farmer, and panchayat samiti member Dattatrye Jhurange. “It is shocking that despite presenting several memorandums to the government and holding two agitations to protest against the airport plan, the Fadnavis government is still going ahead with its plan,” said Memane. “No matter what the government does or the compensation it offers, we will not part with an inch of land,” Memane said.
Panchayat samiti Dattatrye Jhurange said, “The government could not do anything for 10 years in Khed where there was constant protest.
11/11/16 Manoj Dattatreya More/Indian Express