Welcome Guest! You are here: Home » Education & Career

IIT Goa Campus: Villagers block surveyors

Over 300 police personnel who had been rushed to the site were, however, unable to clear the roads

Tuesday January 5, 2021 9:34 PM, IANS


Panaji: Residents of Melaulim village in north Goa who are protesting against the proposed site for the IIT-Goa campus in their village were involved in a stand-off with the state police on Tuesday, as they continue to oppose the project, accusing the government of cheating them by hurrying with land acquisition processes.

As government surveyors arrived in Melaulim village earlier on Tuesday, to conduct a formal survey and demarcation of the land, which has been handed over to the IIT-Goa to develop its campus, hundreds of residents of the village, including women, blocked the roads denying entry to the team of surveyors in the village.

Over 300 police personnel who had been rushed to the site were, however, unable to clear the roads in order to facilitate access to the survey and demarcation team.

A district administration official said that no police personnel nor any protesting villagers were injured in the minor scuffle between the two groups.

"We will continue our protests against the unjust manner in which our lands are being usurped for the project," Shubam Shivolkar one of the protestors said.

Leaders of several opposition parties also rushed to the protest site on Tuesday evening, to establish solidarity with the villagers of Melaulim.

Goa Pradesh Congress Committee general secretary Janardhan Bhandari said that the Congress fully supported the Melaulim villagers. "This government has unjustly grabbed their land without seeking their permission. The Congress fully backs the cause of the Melaulim villagers," Bhandari said.

Goa Aam Aadmi Party convenor Rahul Mahambre said that the AAP supported the IIT project, but added the manner in which the project was being bulldozed against the will of the people was worth condemning.

"We also support the setting up of an IIT in Goa, but not against the wishes of the people. The Goa government has rushed through with the project in Melaulim, without even informing the people of the village about the virtues of the project," Mahambre said.

Ever since an IIT was allotted to Goa by the Central government in 2014, the institute has been functioning from a temporary campus shared by the Goa Engineering College in Farmagudi village in South Goa.

Two sites previously identified by the state government, in Canacona and Sanguem sub districts, for setting up a permanent campus for the IIT were dropped in the face of the protests from local residents and after pressure from the Opposition, which had alleged a land scam in shortlisting of sites for the technology institute.

According to a local BJP MLA and Health Minister Vishwajit Rane, the construction of the IIT campus in Melaulim would be beneficial to the area on account of the development, jobs and investments it would generate.

According to Rane, the IIT campus project represents one of the highest investments made in the state over the last 10 years, with approximately Rs. 3,200 crore expected to be spent over the next four to five years towards setting up of the campus.


For all the latest News, Opinions and Views, download ummid.com App.

Select Language To Read in Urdu, Hindi, Marathi or Arabic.

Share this page

 Post Comments
Note: By posting your comments here you agree to the terms and conditions of www.ummid.com