Hundreds of youths in the Posco project affected villages who have been deprived of employment in the preliminary construction work of the project on Tuesday agitated at Gadkujang pressing for fulfillment of their demands.
Sources said, the construction agency which has bagged the contract for some preliminary project work at the site, sought to win over the support of local unemployed youths by distributing job cards to them.
The construction agency assisted by local elected representatives and members of the pro-Posco outfit United Action Committee (UAC) had distributed 1400 jobs cards to local youths. During disbursement of these cards, the elected representatives had committed to these youths to pay Rs 6,000 per month. The agitating youths, who have been engaged in construction of boundary wall and rehabilitation colony at the Posco site for the past 20-25 days, are yet to get their remuneration.
“The agitation of the youths is natural because they have not yet received their payment after working for 20 to 25 days under the construction agency. I have committed to clear their dues within four days. After getting this assurance, they have refrained from agitation”, said Nakula Sahu,sarpanch of Gadkujang panchayat.
In a parallel development, the aggrieved villagers and the activists of the anti-Posco outfit Posco Pratirodha Sangram Samiti (PPSS), burnt the effigy of South Korea President Lee Myung–Bak at trouble torn Gobindpur as a mark of protest against seeking Indian President Pratibha Patil’s support for expediting the Posco project.
Addressing to gathering, PPSS leader Abhaya Sahu termed the South Korean president as corporate mafia for seeking cooperation from the Indian President for a private company despite being the head of a democratic country.