Action plan to accelerate the rehabilitation of those ousted from Polavaram

By Express press service

RAJAMAHENDRAVARAM: The state government has drawn up a plan to accelerate the rehabilitation of displaced families from the Polavaram project in Polavaram, Kukkunur and Velerupadu mandals in Eluru district over the next two months. Generally, Godavari flood season starts in July.

It is not possible to relocate displaced families once the Godavari River is in flood. Therefore, it was decided to complete the Rehabilitation and Resettlement (R&R) settlements by the end of June to facilitate the rehabilitation of displaced families from the project.

According to Polavaram project officials, there are 137 submerged dwellings spread across 44 villages in Polavaram, Kukkunur and Velerupadu mandals of Jangareddygudem revenue division. Of this total, 19 villages are located in Polavaram, 17 in Velerupadu and eight in Kukkunur mandals.

The construction of 51 rehabilitation and resettlement settlements was undertaken to accommodate 12,984 displaced families (34,697 people) from the three mandals. Residents of submerged villages below contour 41.15 will be relocated before the end of the summer. After that, the movement of displaced people from the submerged villages of Polavaram under contour 45.75 will be resumed.

So far, no less than 6,263 displaced people have been rehabilitated in 19 R&R settlements. Efforts are underway to complete the construction of 32 R&R settlements at the earliest. Divisional Revenue Officer Mr Jhansi Rani said residents of 10 submerged villages had been moved to R&R settlements. The state government has paid Rs 333 crore as compensation and relief to 6,263 displaced persons.

The government has acquired 56,474 acres of land at a cost of Rs 4,303 crore to distribute to displaced people. Approximately 900 acres of land for R&R of project evictions have yet to be acquired. The development of basic amenities in R&R settlements continues apace, the RDO said.

The state government is committed to bringing justice to all displaced people. Compensation and a package of aids will be provided to the evicted from the project in accordance with the standards. All facilities will be provided to the R&R settlements to ensure a comfortable life for the displaced people, Polavaram MP T Balaraju said.

51 R&R colonies coming soon

The construction of 51 R&R colonies has been launched to accommodate 12,984 displaced families from the Polavaram project. Residents of submerged villages below contour 41.15 will be relocated before the end of the summer. After that, residents of villages under contour 45.75 will be moved

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