RAHIM YAR KHAN
The residents of Taranda Sawaye Khan and adjoining areas will not provide their agricultural land at any price for the establishment of proposed Coal Power Plant Project (CPPP), declared Faisal Khan Abbasi while addressing a press conference in the town, some 12-km from here on Saturday.
In the presence of dozens of landlords and hundreds of people of the area, he said that through a letter no SO(Projects)15-66/12-pt-II Government of The Punjab Energy Department Dated 01-01-2014, the DCO had been advised to acquire land for the proposed CPPP. In the letter the district government has directed to initiate necessary procedure for the acquisition of 1,000 acres of land for setting up of two CPPPs of 660MW capacity.
Faisal said that some 15 days back, the government officers visited the land of Taranda Sawaye Khan, Kandaywali, Mori Abbasin, Mumtazabad, Chak 76/P and Chak 77/P including some adjoining villages and basties and completed a survey for the purchase of 1,073 acres of land.
 pointed out that Taranda Sawaye Khan was densely populated town and possessed best fertile agricultural lands, adding that the price of one acre of land in the town was almost Rs3.5 million but the government wanted to buy an acre only for a price of Rs350, 000. "The establishment of CPPP in the area will affect more than 7,000 households, 10,000 livestock and more than one million people will have to suffer with its bad environmental affects. He said that the government was establishing CPPP on fertile lands despite the fact that there was a large piece of 1,350 acres of state land in Mauza Bhanaywal near Metla railway station in Tehsil Liaqatpur.
Similarly, many acres of state land is available in the desert (Cholistan) where CPPP could be established.
He feared that the establishment of CPPP would push the town into a human crisis which would have its aftershocks in the neighbouring areas as well.
Faisal claimed that they had met the local parliamentarians for the resolution of this sensitive issue but they (MPs) replied that they would take up the issue with the Punjab CM during the upcoming expected visit to the district.
He vowed that the residents would also file a writ petition in the Lahore High Court to save their homes and fertile agricultural lands and would restore to all other options including protests to get their voice heard. Landlords of adjoining areas including Sarfaz Khan Abbasi, Makhdoom Mukhtar Hussain, Makhdoom Imtiaz Hussain, Jam Shamash Kallar, Ch Nauman Sagheer and Makhdoom Faiz Rasool also addressed the press conference.