Odisha High Court has asked the state government and district administration to conduct an inquiry and submit its report on alleged encroachment of a public road and water body of Bata River by a private company.
Villagers of Uadyabat, led by Nabaghan Parida and five others had filed a writ petition in Odisha High Court against Revenue Divisional Commissioner, Central Range, Cuttack collector, Jagatsinghpur sub-collector, Kujang tehsildar and managing director, Kalinga Calciner Limited, alleging illegal encroachment of creeks and land as well as a public road.
The villagers said they had secured information through the RTI on the status of the concerned area and found that it had not been allotted to the company. They said the water bodies had been contaminated, killing fish in large numbers due to effluent discharge.
They contended that 1.65 acres of creeks had been encroached upon. Creeks category land which have been encroached are connected to Bata river and the entire rain water of the area used to flow to the river.
Because of the obstruction of the creeks, stagnation of water takes place and at that time it floods a colony, they charged. Due to discharge of industrial waste water into the creek which connects to the Bata river, the fish and other aquatic fauna population has been severely affected.
It may be recalled that last week a large number of fish was floating dead in Bata river and the pollution control board authorities had taken samples for tests to ascertain the cause of death.
The villagers said the High Court on Tuesday directed the RDC and collector to conduct an inquiry and submit the detailed report within three months. It may be noted here that earlier, the villagers had also moved the National Green Tribunal which had issued certain directions to the state pollution control board.