One killed in Posco clashes, tension in area



Bhubaneswar: Hundreds of armed policemen patrolled Odisha's coastal Jagatsinghpur district on Thursday after a person was killed in clashes over the construction of a road in the area, officials said.

"We are keeping close watch on the situation. Police patrolling has been intensified as the situation remains tense," district superintendent of police SSDD Singh told a news agency.

A construction firm worker was killed and two others injured when clashes broke out near Dhinkia village in the district Wednesday afternoon between villagers and workers over construction of a road.

The clashes erupted after hundreds of villagers opposed to Posco's USD 12 billion project in the area did not allow workers to carry out construction works.

While police said the protesters attacked the workers and hurled locally-made crude bombs, opponents of the project said people at the construction site first attacked the villagers with sticks and axes and hurled bombs.

The foundation stone for the 10-km coastal road was laid in August but work had stopped midway after local protests. Although the work had resumed Tuesday, authorities had to halt it again after Wednesday's clashes.

While the state government says the road will improve communication, the project-opponents say the move is intended to speed up work for the South Korean major's planned steel plant.

IANS