Thursday, July 12, 2007

Lepchas protest against Dzongu hydro project


Environment under threat
Statesman News Service
GANGTOK, July 11: Members of the Lepcha Youth Association (LYA), Kalimpong unit, blocked NH-31A at West Bengal-Sikkim border in Melli for more than two hours today to express their solidarity with activists of the Affected Citizens of Teesta (ACT) who have launched a hunger strike in Gangtok to protest against the upcoming hydroelectric power projects at Dzongu in North Sikkim.
Traffic movement was paralysed on the highway owing to the roadblock. Vehicles remained stranded on the highway in different places.
Mr Ajuk Tamsangmo, chief coordinator of the Lepcha Youth Association, said: “Over 4,300 people from Darjeeling, Kalimpong, Kurseong, Mirik and Bhutan participated in today’s roadblock in a peaceful manner.
The government’s move to start hydel power projects at Dzongu is not acceptable as it would affect the environment in the area and destroy the Lepchas’ creations.”
Members of various organisations, such as the Darjeeling Thong Tsesung (DTT), Darjeeling Primitive Tribes (DPT), Rong Ong Prongzen (ROP) and Teesta Sanga Samiti (TSS) supported the LYA’s agitation today.
“Apart from requesting the Sikkim chief minister and the Governor to withdraw the hydel power projects from Dzongu, we have also written letters to the Prime Minister, the President of India and the United Progressive Alliance chairperson, Mrs Sonia Gandhi,” Mr Tamsangmo, said.
Meanwhile, the hunger strike launched by the Affected Citizens of Teesta members in Gangtok entered its 22nd day today, with no solution in sight.

Lepchas protest against Dzongu hydro project

Environment under threat
Statesman News Service
GANGTOK, July 11: Members of the Lepcha Youth Association (LYA), Kalimpong unit, blocked NH-31A at West Bengal-Sikkim border in Melli for more than two hours today to express their solidarity with activists of the Affected Citizens of Teesta (ACT) who have launched a hunger strike in Gangtok to protest against the upcoming hydroelectric power projects at Dzongu in North Sikkim.
Traffic movement was paralysed on the highway owing to the roadblock. Vehicles remained stranded on the highway in different places.
Mr Ajuk Tamsangmo, chief coordinator of the Lepcha Youth Association, said: “Over 4,300 people from Darjeeling, Kalimpong, Kurseong, Mirik and Bhutan participated in today’s roadblock in a peaceful manner.
The government’s move to start hydel power projects at Dzongu is not acceptable as it would affect the environment in the area and destroy the Lepchas’ creations.”
Members of various organisations, such as the Darjeeling Thong Tsesung (DTT), Darjeeling Primitive Tribes (DPT), Rong Ong Prongzen (ROP) and Teesta Sanga Samiti (TSS) supported the LYA’s agitation today.
“Apart from requesting the Sikkim chief minister and the Governor to withdraw the hydel power projects from Dzongu, we have also written letters to the Prime Minister, the President of India and the United Progressive Alliance chairperson, Mrs Sonia Gandhi,” Mr Tamsangmo, said.
Meanwhile, the hunger strike launched by the Affected Citizens of Teesta members in Gangtok entered its 22nd day today, with no solution in sight.