In the year 2017, Adani Power acquired the lands of 12 villages, which was protested by Podaiyahat MLA Pradeep Yadav. He had spearheaded the movement against land acquisition.
A total of 7 cases were filed against Pradeep Yadav. However, the Dumka MP-MLA court has acquitted him in the fourth case.
Yadav has confirmed the news and expressed his belief that he will also be acquitted in the remaining three cases. He stated, “truth always remains victorious.”
The case originated when Yadav took action against the former BJP government for allegedly acquiring land from 12 villages without following the proper land acquisition process, after Adani Power Plant began construction of a power plant in Godda. It was claimed that the BJP government reduced the land price to benefit Adani.
Villagers, led by Yadav, highlighted the flaws in the land acquisition process and intensified their protest. They argued that under the Land Acquisition Act 2013, their land should not be taken away forcibly until 80% of the landowners in the village are willing to give their land voluntarily.
Between 2016 and 2018, Yadav spearheaded the resistance against the land acquisition by leading the local people’s protests. At that time, he belonged to a different political party, the Jharkhand Vikas Morcha – Prajatantrik (Jharkhand Development Front – Democratic).
However, in 2020, when this party formed a coalition with the BJP, Yadav left and joined Congress.
Pradeep Yadav was incarcerated for approximately five months for leading a movement against the Rs 15,000 crore power plant. However, Yadav did not focus on the supposed land encroachment, displacement, and crackdown against the demonstrators during his campaign.
Adani’s Godda Power plant
Adani’s Godda power plant is a proposed coal-fired power plant located in the Godda district of Jharkhand. The thermal power plant is located approximately 10 km from Godda town on the Gumla-Bhagalpur highway.
A left turn from the highway leads to Motia village, from where one has to travel 5 km to reach the actual location, which is surrounded by concrete boundary walls, with barbed fences, covering an extensive area of land spanning approximately 11 villages.
The project has faced controversy and opposition from environmental and social groups due to concerns over air and water pollution, displacement of local communities, and the impact on the climate.
The project has also faced legal challenges, including a case in the Indian Supreme Court regarding the validity of the environmental clearance granted to the project. Despite these challenges, Adani Power has pushed ahead with the project, citing the need for reliable and affordable power in India.
Massive demonstrations erupted in Motia in 2017 when Adani Power signed an MoU with Bangladesh to establish an 800 MW thermal power plant in the area. When the government identified 2,300 acres of land for the project and notified 11 villages, protests spread to Motia and other villages such as Ganga, Gayghat, Mali, and Nayabad.
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