Kohima: The Angami Youth Oragnisation (AYO), apex youth body of the Angami Naga tribe in Nagaland demanded the suspension of a Manipur-bound gas pipeline along the stretch of the National Highway-29 with immediate effect.
AYO president Kesosul Christopher and general secretary Neidilhoutuo Sechü informed that the exercise for a massive gas pipeline project was carried out without having proper consultation with the concerned stakeholders and landowners.
The tribal youth leaders informed that a company identified as ‘Indradhanush Gas Grid Limited’ (IGGL) was undertaking the gas pipeline project. Following a meeting with its four units- Southern Angami Youth Oragnisation (SAYO), Northern Angami Youth Oragnisation (NAYO), Western Angami Youth Oragnisation (WAYO) and Chakhroma Youth Oragnisation (CYO), the youth body resolved that a mega project of this nature cannot be carried out without educating the public about the merits and demerits of the construction.
“Multiple incidents of bursting of gas pipelines across the country, which led to loss of lives and property, should teach us better before we initiate a mega project of this nature. Nagaland state, which falls under the seismic zone-V as per the data brought out by the National Centre for Seismology, cannot ignore the risk it involves in implementing the gas pipeline project. Economy matters, yet safety of lives is paramount to any development,” the leaders said.
Although the gas pipeline may benefit the market and its economy in a huge way, the tribal youth body said that one cannot rule out the negative consequences that the residents may face.
“A project such as this will constantly endanger the lives of the people, especially those villages and the populace along the stretch of the NH-29,” they said.
AYO questioned, “When we all know that our land is prone to so many natural calamities, why won’t the public have apprehension that major catastrophic incidents are bound to happen anytime even on a slightest mishap or technical breakdown. Who will hold the responsibility in the event it leads to any catastrophe in the future?”
The youth body said that the NHIDCL is well aware of the natural calamities and accidents that occur every now and then along the National Highway, and the project of laying the gas pipeline along that stretch is nothing but a time-bomb waiting to be triggered at any moment.
In this regard, the AYO condemned and questioned the NHIDCL for grating the Right of Way for laying the Gas Pipeline along the National Highway 29 just for the purpose of financial benefits.
“At a time when the Chakhroma Youth Organisation, the apex youth body of one of the four AYO ranges have submitted several representations and press statements, yet, the IGGL and the NHIDCL had the audacity to go ahead in continuing their works by transporting the gas pipes to the Western Angami jurisdiction under Kohima district. This itself clearly indicates the irresponsible behaviour of the NHIDCL and IGGL towards the public,” they said.
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The youth body observed that there is a lackadaisical approach from the government and the company undertaking the project. They reiterated that the public needs to be educated about the project, particularly the risk and the safety measures it involves.
With immediate effect, the AYO with its four ranges decided that any work related to the gas pipeline project should be kept suspended within the Angami region. It said that the IGGL and NHIDCL must refrain from carrying out any works related to the said project.
“Failure to comply with this notice will be at your own risk,” they warned.
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