Gangtok: Ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s scheduled visit to Sikkim on September 23 to inaugurate the state’s first airport in Pakyong, over 400 ‘project-hit’ families have appealed the PM to postpone its inauguration till after September 24, the date of final hearing fixed by the Sikkim High Court in this regard.
The local residents have also urged the PM to intervene into the matter so that adequate compensation is paid to the affected people.
In a memorandum submitted to the PM on September 14, the petitioners have said that a large section of people have been affected due to the construction of the airport.
“The state government and the Airports Authority of India offered meagre amounts of money to those people who have been displaced due to the construction of the airport. Because of the construction work, houses and the boundary walls, etc, in the nearby areas have developed major cracks, which became totally unfit for future use,” the memorandum alleged.
The affected people further said that due to the lack of proper houses and sources of income, these people are passing sleepless nights and struggling to make their ends meet.
Failing to get any response from the authorities concerned, the affected locals had to approach the Sikkim High Court to get their grievances redressed. The court then fixed the date of final hearing of the case to September 24, a day after the scheduled inauguration of the airport. “It’s really unfortunate that the government has fixed the date of inauguration a day before the final hearing date,” the memorandum regretted.