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  • Centre sets up panel to probe charges against Posco

    Published on July 29, 2010

    In further trouble for South Korean giant Posco, the Centre on Wednesday set up a four-member panel to probe alleged forest rights violations at the multinational’s proposed steel plant in Jagatsinghpur in Orissa.

    “We have constituted a fact-finding team headed by former Environment Secretary Meena Gupta to probe the violation of the tribal rights under the Forest Rights Act at the project site,” Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh said.

    The South Korean steel major’s trouble started soon after it was given approval for diversion of 1,253 hectares of forest land for setting up a USD 12-billion integrated iron and steel plant along with a captive power plant near Paradip the state.

    It has been facing land acquisition problem with allegations of violations of rights of tribals who owns the land there.

    The panel was formed after the Ministry took a serious note of the Orissa Government’s “casual approach” to its direction to supply a compliance report drafted in Oriya in translated versions in Hindi and English language.

    The ministry had informed the state government that no forest land should be handed over to the user agency (Posco) before the settlement of the tribal rights under the provision of Forest Rights Act.

    The team comprising Uma Pingle, V Suresh, an advocate for human rights and Devendra Pandey, an IFS official, has been asked to submit its report within two months.