The Chakhroma Gaon Burha Union on Saturday reiterated that no individual or organisation, claiming to be landowners, would be allowed to disturb the ongoing construction of the four-lane National Highway 29 between Purana Bazaar and Chumukedima at Dimapur.
The union made it clear that there is no other landowner except the traditional landowners.
In a release, union president Thepfukedo Kuotsu and general secretary Atso Gwizan reminded that the traditional owners had freely given their land to the government as it was not “our custom to block roadways and waterways from passing our land”.
Expressing disappointment that some people claiming compensation are hampering the four-laning of the highway in Nagaland, the union said it has been closely observing the work and found how certain “undesired elements” propped up time and again to create unnecessary hindrance to the ongoing work.
It appealed to all to support in making Nagaland a developed state and ensure that the hard-earned development projects are not disturbed by few “self-centred individuals”.
Reiterating its commitment to development of the area in the larger interests of all Nagas, the union called upon all village councils situated along the highway to lend their support for smooth execution of the work in their respective areas.
Claiming that the national highway fell within the Chakhroma traditional land, it pointed out that when it was constructed, no compensation whatsoever was demanded as the land was given freely for development.
The union said provisions of 75 feet on both sides from the middle of the highway were also kept reserved for future developments. However, with increase in the number of settlers in the area, many started encroaching upon the highway and they were now demanding compensation by claiming to be landowners, it said.
The union said those later settlers, who are now demanding compensation, had encroached upon the portions of the land already given to the government and that there is no question of paying compensation to the encroachers on reserved land.
It fully endorsed the May 7 resolution adopted at the meeting between Chumukedima area gaon burahs (village chiefs) and village council chairmen with Chumukedima administration.
“When such a hard-earned development project was coming to our land, we cannot allow few self-centred individuals forming a union to snatch away this opportunity,” it said.
The union said if the opportunity was missed, it would never come back and so every right-thinking Naga should support the timely and satisfactory completion of the work.
It also made a fervent appeal to every Naga to report to the authority concerned if he or she feels that specifications are not being followed in the construction work and obtain expert opinion before taking the matter in his or her hand.
The appreciated four villages of Purana Bazaar, Padumpukhri, Naharbari and Darogapathar for their public declaration not to allow any individual or union to claim land compensation within their jurisdiction.
It said the wise and matured decision of the four villages should also be emulated by other villages to bring about progress and development.