Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar announced that the Center has saved Rs 1,600 crore for the Arunachal Pradesh Government for the Dibang dam project, residents felt a moderate earthquake in the state on July 19-20.
It is difficult for the decision-makers to not see this change as a prophetic message that construction of dams in eastern Himalayas is full of dangers beyond the ability of scientists to predict them.
The multi-purpose Dibang project has been designed as the world’s largest concrete gravitational dam at 278 meters above sea level.
Dibang river is one of the three important tributaries of Brahmaputra, which will be stored and used for generating 2,880 MW of energy.
The river flows near the Indo-China border and enters Arunachal Pradesh through the Mizami hills, before it flows in the Deobang Valley in Nizam.
This area is not only a seismically active area but also a biological treasure.
It includes some large contiguous areas of tropical, sub-tropical and temperate forests in the country.
These forests support many species of wildlife such as leopard, tiger and macaque, many species of deer and bear, along with many endemic and endangered birds.
The project site is the home of the Idu-Mishmi community. Many people in the community have strongly opposed the dam, but the government has faced constant suppression of protesters.
The story between 2007 and 2013 is that how the government will create local approval for the Great Dame in one of the world’s most ecologically and geographically sensitive areas, indicating how Indian state sees people on its territory and the border. is.
Public hearing or public protest
The Dibang Dam was being imagined for a long time, but the detailed report of this project was prepared by the National Hydropower Company in 2000 when the National Government in the center was BNP-led National Democratic Alliance (BNP).
The Congress then ruled Arunachal Pradesh under the leadership of Prime Minister Mukut Methi who landed from the lower Dibang Valley. Dam was part of his political project to achieve development in this corner of the country.
This dam was to be operational in 2010. But this project had to face unpredictable public opposition.
Under the EIA notice, the dam needs environmental approval. This approval process includes public hearings organized by the government and is accused of listening to the concerns raised by the local population about the proposed projects.
Deobang’s project hearing was first announced in May 2007. Till then, both Assam and Arunachal Pradesh were aware of many problems, which would generate dams for them.
At that time, there was a growing social movement against the Supriani hydroelectric dam project on the Assam-Arunachal border, a class on the dams and development of many residents of the area.
Local newspapers published Arunachali report for the environmental impact of investigations of the defects and the blindness of the project in the Dibang Dam study.
The operation of the dam will change the natural water flow system in the river.
Apart from this, the project will have direct damage to the forest more than 5000 hectares in the valley, and sand and rocks will be removed from the river to help in the construction.
These aspects of the project will affect at least three national parks and parks, four major bird areas and three potential Ramsar or wetlands international landmarks.
The technical reports of the project also mentioned “Geological Surprises”, which is an expression of irresponsible risks faced by dams in the northeast of landslide and seismic activity.
The communities were worried about what they would build in relation to their land. Over 100 families may be displaced from their homes and over 700 families will lose their land.
Since 2007, public hearings have been announced dozens of times for this project.
Every time the press was reported, the protesters used to protest by the people of the community, who believed that the dam could not be equated for development.
One of the most frequently answered images was blockade on the road, which called a “no dam, back-NHPC”, a huge banner.
Some hearings were directed to the local population, but could not be fulfilled according to the legal requirements and it should be canceled.
In January 2008, at least 1,200 people from this small community of approximately 12,000 took part in a hearing from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.
In February 2008, in the People’s Court of the Large Arsenal in Arunachal Pradesh, local residents claimed that “the people affected by this project hardly entered the plannery” and many participants had to press the police to enter the hall. “