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SAIL BSP to fund barracks for CISF to access ore
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Thursday, 08 Nov 2012
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The Hindu reported that Bhilai Steel Plant, one of the main steel producing units of Steel Authority of India, will fund construction of barracks for paramilitary forces to ensure security for the coming mining project at Raoghat in Kanker, central Chhatisgarh.

The construction has been initiated, both Union Home Ministry and SAIL sources confirmed.

The BSP needs iron ore from the Raoghat mines about 175 kilometer south of Bhilai as its existing nearby mines are fast depleting. The banned CPI Maoist, which has a strong presence in Raoghat, has opposed the mining project.

According to SAIL officials, The BSP is accessing iron ore from various captive mines in and around Dalli to Rajhara, 85 kilometer south of Bhilai, for a few decades. However, those mines are depleting.

The BSP needs to access iron ore from Raoghat, a hilly forested patch another 95 kilometer south of Dalli to Rajhara. The BSP and Dalli to Rajhara are connected by rail to transport iron ore, unlike Bhilai and Raoghat. SAIL is keen to have a rail road to Raoghat from Dalli to Rajhara. However, strong Maoist presence and land acquisition issues are postponing the project, resulting in cost escalation.

In the recent meetings between Home Ministry officials and SAIL, it has been decided that four battalions with more than 4,000 personnel of elite paramilitary forces will be deployed to guard the railway construction site between Dalli to Rajhara and Raoghat. The Border Security Force and the Central Reserve Police Force will provide two battalions each. The BSP will fund barracks of the paramilitary forces along the 95 kilometer track.

Sources said that “Not less than 20 barracks and requisite fortification are required to house the forces. Some of the BSF forces have started moving to Kanker.”

According to Maoist communiqués, the area adjacent to Raoghat is almost entirely controlled by the CPI Maoist. The outfit has an area committee in Raoghat. It operates under the North Bastar/Madh division. The North Bastar/Madh division, united in 2009, is one of the powerful divisions and reports to the North Regional Committee which, in turn, reports to the highest State committee of Chhattisgarh, the Dandkarnya Special Zonal Committee of the CPI Maoist.

Source - The Hindu


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