Hyderabad: The construction of the Kondapochamma Reservoir swallowed three villages Mamidyala, Biranpur and Tanderpally. The people residing there were promised good compensation. Now they feel cheated and are left with nothing.
The Kondapochamma Reservoir was inaugurated by Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao in the last week of May. The reservoir is a part of Kaleshwaram Lift Irrigation project.
While speaking to city based activist Aditya, a villager Seenu who once resided in at the place of reservoir said, “We were not being paid the correct compensation – we approached the court – the court is established to give justice. Now the ground level authorities are considering that it was our mistake to approach the court,” he added.
“They forcefully shifted us on April 30, with the help of police and revenue officers gave us these rehabilitation houses which are not fit for us to live.”
He cries pleading, “You have filled in water but still we did not receive our compensation and they are saying that we will receive everything as per court. We request the authorities to please give us rehabilitation houses.”
Another person Balamani, who belongs to Bailampur village claims that she has been denied getting property as she is a widow. “Even though my name is present in the list and I got the package papers, now they have termed me as a widow and are not giving me house.”
She added, “They keep on say that we will get our houses in the future but other than that, there has been no update. They are saying Corona is delaying the process.”
It has also been informed that by Dussera, she has to leave the house given to her.
When asked about the approaching government officials or any such authorities, she hopelessly added, “We once went to Mandal Office to meet officials 15 to 20 days back. They were not present that day, we were returning back and got to know that KCR sir was traveling via road that way. We stood there to wish him. 15 to 20 police officers gathered there with sticks and were trying to beat us and forcing us to leave.”
Balamani cries over the situation and considers the last choice which is to kill herself jumping over Kondapochamma.
While speaking to another villager, Rajkumar from the same village, he said, “I had 10 acres in the area of Kondapochamma Dam.”
He added “I had fertile irrigation lands back there. We used to grow corn and many other crops. One day suddenly they shifted us here with literally nothing.”
People made roofless over night
Farmer Anjaneyulu said, “On April 30, with the help of around 2,000 police officers, in the presence of ACP and Collector Venkat Ramireddy, they forcefully dragged us out and made us (more than 30 families) shift overnight at 3 to 3:30 AM.”
He added, “They told us that they would show us a double bed room house. However, instead they shifted us to this small shed houses and they left. No officer came later to check on us.”
The farmer added on making sharps remarks about the behavior of the authority by saying, “IAS Officer – Venkat Rami Reddy doesn’t speak like a government official. He speaks like a rude politician. He doesn’t care for people and is very biased towards us farmers.”
He further claims that his parents were threatened when he approached the collector’s office for justice.
Farmer Anjaneyulu, who resides in RR colony (which has now become a shelter to the people displaced from the area of Kondapochamma Sagar) justifies that they collectively decided to approach court because they were treated in an unfair manner.
“They even send police so that we do not approach court. We have no other option than to obey the ACP’s orders. If we do not obey his orders, he will send 2,000 to 3,000 officers to threaten us,” he adds commenting on the approach of police in this issue.
The entire issue comes to scene hardly 20 kilometers away from the Chief Minister’s constituency.
Alternative jobs for the people affected
Villager Anjaneyulu claims that the authorities promised a job to them after snatching away their farms. But just like many of their other promises, those assurances never materialized on the ground level.
A sense of fear can be felt in the village he added, counting on to an incident where they were taken to the police station just for recording a video.
Hospitals and Electricity bills
On being asked about hospitals and medical services in the area, Anjaneyulu responded, “We don’t have a hospital nearby; we don’t have any good facilities over here. Initially, they gave us some food but later they stopped doing it.”
He recounts the incident in which police authorities did not bother about children too. At midnight, they saw the authorities dragging them out and destroying their houses in front of their eyes while their mobile phones were taken away to stop them from recording.
In another incident, a widowed local from the village of Mulugu shares a nightmare. She has been staying in the allotted place since the past seven months. After looking at the electricity bill of Rs. 7,000, all she expects is death at this point.