NHRC attention drawn on pathetic condition of Loktak Lake by Loktak Project

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IMPHAL, April 1: Environmentalist Moirangthem Asnikumar has submitted a memorandum to the National Human Rights Commission of India claiming total deprivation of right to life and right to environment and protection of state environment, nature and cultural heritage by the Loktak Hydro Electric Project.

The memorandum was submitted on March 31.

In his memorandum, he had sought the chairman to protect the rights of indigenous people, who have been victimized by Loktak Multi-propose project.

It said the implementation of the Loktak Lake Multi-propose Project which is run by the National Hydro Power Corporation (NHPC), India has adversely affected the natural environment of the area and its indigenous people.

It said the Loktak Lake is a natural heritage of the State; however, after the implementation of the Multi-propose Project the physiology, biological and ecological conditions of the lake has deteriorated beyond recovery.

The authority of the NHPC hasn’t cared about the environment impact and consequently the project has violated the right to environment and the right to life of the indigenous population inhabiting in and around Loktak Lake.

It continued that the NHPC had assured the people to reclaim 60,000 acres of land in and around the lake which will be distributed to landless agricultural labourer.

It has also assured that about 40000 hectares of arable land will be extended with irrigation facility for the practice of double and multiple cropping by levelling the Loktak water and after commission of the project the power generated from the Loktak Lake will be supplied to local consumers at the rate of 10 paise per unit consumption, the memorandum said.

But unfortunately, the NHPC has failed to meet its assurances till today, it said.

It further claimed that more than 1,00,000 hectares of arable land have been submerged due to the project which were originally cultivated land before the construction of the project and commission of the Ithai Barrage.

It said the people led by CSOs have been raising strong voices to save the lake; however, taking advantage of the people’s movement, the Congress government promulgated the ‘half-cooked’ Loktak Protection Act 2006.

The act is become anti-people particularly anti-fisherman on this particular Lake, it said.

It said the need of hour is to examine and review the Loktak Protection Act 2006 to save the Lake and in the interest of the humanity for mankind.

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