Chiria: The dream of global and private Indian steel companies to secure iron ore from world-famous Chiria mines may not fructify as the locals view them as “intruders” and are in no mood to oblige them.
“There will be a massive protest if the Government of Jharkhand allots mining leases to any private steel player be it Mittal or Jindal,” Rajesh Vishwakarma, a local resident and general secretary of Gua Chiria Khan Shramik Sangh that has around 800 members, told PTI.
He said nearly 15,000 villagers of the region have been associated with IISCO for decades and have soft corner for it even after its merger with Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL).
“Our forefathers have been associated with the PSU for decades and we know the private players will simply mint after they are alloted the mines. This will not be the case with the PSU,” he said.
Even as Vishwakarma advocated for renewal of mining leases (that were earlier cancelled by the Jharkhand Government) in favour of SAIL, he wanted the state-run steel giant to provide better facilities to people in the Chiria township.
“SAIL needs to give us more in terms of facilities. But, this is our domestic problem and we will solve it ourselves,” he said.
Echoing similar sentiments, Malti Samanta, leader of a 150-member strong women organisation in Chiria and Manoharpur block president of All Jharkhand Students Union, said “The condition of homes in Chiria is horrible. There is neither sanitation nor proper water supply and electricity. We hope more from SAIL,” she said.