The farmers claimed that the men who came with earth mover started to dug out farmlands with fully-grown paddy crop.
Farmers of Cumbur near Karungalagudi on Thursday chased away contractors who came for cutting trenches to lay underground pipeline for Indian Oil Corporation.
The farmers claimed that the men who came with earth mover started to dug out farmlands with fully-grown paddy crop. “They claimed that they have got permission from the farmers to lay the second pipeline along the farmlands where already another pipeline had already been laid years back,” said Chinnathambi, a farmer.
However, a representative of the trench-cutting team, Saravanan, said that IOCL was only trying to cut trench on the land it had already acquired in the past. The existing pipeline is used for transporting diesel. Another farmer, A. Kumar (30) said that after issuing notice 20 days back, the team had come to cut the trench without the farmer’s consent.
IOCL had already promised to pay compensation for the crop that would be damaged for laying the new pipeline.
“In the past our elders did not know the threat about the underground pipeline. But, we are now aware of it as gas line could be a threat for generations to come,” Mr. Kumar claimed.
He claimed that the Cumbur panchayat had passed resolutions several times in the last two years denying permission for gas line through their village.
However, the panchayat president, Kathiresan, denied knowledge about any such resolution.
The farmers claimed that they were seeing the paddy crops at flowering stage on the rain-fed fields after several years. “How can they bury the standing crop just days before harvesting,” Mr. Kumar asked.
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