Itanagar: The Dam Affected Peoples’ Forum (DAPF) has iterated the need to address grievances of the people to be affected by the Lower Siang hydroelectric project (LSHEP) at Pasighat in East Siang district.
The Forum in a memorandum to Union Minister of Environment and Forests Jairam Ramesh last week has questioned the very basis of the memorandum of agreement (MoA) signed between the state government and Jaypee Associates on the construction of the power project in the district.
The Forum, calling for no mega dam, vented out its apprehension over the absence of rehabilitation and resettlement measures for the downstream people.
The memorandum, quoting agenda 21 of UN Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) adopted in 1992, stated that the LSHEP has become a cause of discontentment as the project was conceived without any consent from the would-be affected people.
The agenda 21 of UNCED states before implementation of any project the consent of all members of communities affected by project needs to be acquired in accordance with their customary laws and practices, and the consent can be gained only after the full disclosure of the intent and scope of the planned project is communicated in a language understood by the people.
Venting out its fear over the future of downstream areas of the project, DAPF said: “The MoA executed between the government of Arunachal and Jayprakash Associates Ltd is
silent about the protective and security measures for people
residing in downstream areas”.
In case of any mishap, Pasighat and its adjoining areas on the right bank and Mebo circle on the left bank of Siang will remain unprotected, it added.