On Wednesday 23rd, the CPI(Maoist) allegedly attacked the Essar Pipeline, that transports iron ore to the Essar steel plant.
The attackers destroyed the Pipeline close to the village of Digha Janbai in the district of Malkangiri in Odisha, near the Odisha-Andra-Pradresh Border. The iron ore supply to the plant was completely cut off, the production had to stop.
A similar incident already happened on January 21st, also near Digha Janbai, when a group of attackers destroyed the Pipeline with crowbars and hacksaws. Iron ore was leaking onto the farmland, destroying the crops of the village farmers.
But the CPI(Maoist) has since issued a statement saying that it was not their action. The Pipeline was reportedly already damaged and the Essar company should pay compensation for the village farmers that lost their crop.
The Essar Pipeline is an iron-ore slurry supply Pipeline. It transports between 20 000 and 22 000 tonnes of iron ore per day from the Bailadila mines in Dantewada, Chhattisgarh over 273 kilometers to the Essar plant, which has an annual capacity of 8 million tonnes of iron ore. It is one of the biggest companies in India, and like the lot of Indian industry it is controlled by the imperialists.
Mining sites that are carried out by big businesses are an important target for the CPI(Maoist). The land on which the mining sites are build has in many cases been robbed from the poor farmers and the Indian natives, the adivasi. Those people are being forcefully removed from their land and put in camps. India has one of the biggest number of those „internally displaced“ in relation to the general population.
Attacks on the industrial plants that belongs to the imperialists are an essential and justified task in order to free the peoples in India from the yoke of imperialism. And so the CPI(Maoist) has led more than 10 attacks on the pipeline since its commencement.
On the question of the environmental consequences we would like to quote the now imprisoned social activist GN Saibaba.
„… Secondly, another important reason why the minerals should not be mined is that that would not only lead to the displacement of the population, but those are very fragile forest and mountain areas, and when you exploit them it would lead to an irreparable damage for the environment. It would mean a massive increase of climate change and global warming and the Indian subcontinent would never recover. It would mean a massive change for the entire sub-continent.
Therefore, because of environmental reasons and for the life of the people, they shouldn‘t be exploited.“