In yet another incident of local residents opposing projects being set up in Himachal Pradesh, residents of Banala in Mandi have raised their voice against forestland in the village being taken over by Power Grid Corporation Of India.
In a meeting held under the chairmanship of Kulbhushan Upamanue of Chipko Movement, the Kigas panchayat decided that no forestland in Banala village would be handed over to the power utility for setting up its switchyard. The villagers threatened that if the government decides to hand over the said land to Power Grid Corporation, then they would be left with no option but to start an agitation. Earlier, the government had been facing problem in getting land for an international airport in Kangra, Una and Mandi district. A people’s movement has also arisen to appose various small and large hydroelectric projects in the state with voices being raised that interests of local people were being overlooked by power companies and the government. The Manali Ski resort project too is facing criticism from various sections owning to fears regarding various social and ecological problems that may crop up.