ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Havoc of Tipaimukh High Dam Project

The Naga Women Union, Manipur, would like to appeal to all like-minded people to intervene and stop the signing of memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the government of Manipur and the North-Eastern Electrical Power Corporation (NEEPCO) concerning the proposed Tipaimukh rock-filled high dam. There has been no other more dreaded state-sponsored human rights abuse than the Tipaimukh high dam on Ahu (Barak) river located about 500 metres downstream of the confluence of the Tuivai and Ahu (Barak) rivers on the Manipur-Mizoram border. The proposed 162.80 metres high dam, whose primary objective is to prevent frequent occurrences of flood in the Cachar plain of Assam, will result in permanent submergence of 275.50 sq kms of land surface in Manipur. This is against the National Land Use Policy. The Manipur people’s constitutional rights were circumvented by secret approval of the project given during the period of central rule in Manipur, according to a statement given on the floor of the Manipur state assembly by the then minister of irrigation and flood control, government of Manipur, L Chandramani Singh. The government of Manipur is at present attempting to sign the MoU with NEEPCO without the participation of the people, particularly the affected people of Tamenglong district.

The main sources of livelihood of the people are agriculture and horticulture. But with the construction of the Tipaimukh high dam more than 67 villages will be deprived of their source of livelihood. Out of the 67 villages, 16 will be completely submerged, whereas almost the entire lowland of the rest of the villages will be submerged by the dam along the banks of the three major river courses of Manipur – the Ahu (Barak), the Alang (Irang) and Makhu (Makru) river systems which run through the length of Tamenglong district of Manipur. Besides, it is feared that many more villages may be affected by the water level of the reservoirs during the rainy seasons. Thus the villages of Tamenglong district will face a constant threat of submergence.

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