It has come to light that several people from a village in Maharashtra’s Ahmednagar have lost their lives due to shooting practice at the Army’s KK Range and people are in a state of panic, NCP chief Sharad Pawar told Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday. Pawar also flagged other issues faced by locals due to the expansion of the practice range, over 250 kilometres from here, and asked Singh for a stay on the plan.
In a series of tweets, Pawar said the defence minister assured him more land will not be acquired for expanding the project, adding that the latter had told him meetings would beheld at the local level between public representatives and range officials on the issue. Pawar made these demands during a meet with Singh in Delhi and tweeted about them later. NCP Parner MLA Nilesh Lanke accompanied Pawar.
तसेच शेतकऱ्यांना कर्ज उपलब्ध होण्यासाठी अर्थमंत्र्यांशी बोलून वित्तीय संस्थांची बैठक बोलवण्यात येईल, कर्जाअभावी कोणाचीही विकास थांबू नये, अशी भूमिका संरक्षणमंत्र्यांनी मांडून लंके व शिष्टमंडळाला आश्वस्त केले.@rajnathsingh pic.twitter.com/xLhP33UQTV— Sharad Pawar (@PawarSpeaks) September 18, 2020
Pawar said people from 23 villages, mostly tribal,were facing problems because of the expansion of the project,and distribution of forest land parcels had also stopped at the moment due to the project. Banks and financial institutions were denying loans to locals due to the same reason, while the shooting range was also coming in the way of big projects being set up there, Pawar said.
Pawar pointed out that pomegranate and sugarcane was being grown on one lakh hectares of land there with water from Mula dam, and, therefore, residents cannot be shifted elsewhere. ”Moreover, it has also come to light that several people from Kharekarjun village have lost their lives due to shooting practice. Panic is developing among locals due to firing,” he said.
”Raised these issues before the Defence Minister and demanded he take note of these and stay further expansion of the KK Range. The defence minister has assured more land will not be acquired for the KK Range,” Pawar said. Singh assured of a meeting with financial institutions after speaking to the Union finance minister to ensure farmers get loans, Pawar added.