Lavasa Gets A Little Help From Friends
Lavasa, the illegal township “hill city” thats gotten Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh in a tizzy has now found support from an unexpected quarter: the villagers who it displaced. Residents of 18 villages whose land was bought over to expand the 100 sq. km. town in the Sahyadri mountain range, have told the Bombay High Court that since development began, they’ve benefitted from the infrastructure improvements. “The villagers supporting Lavasa have said that until the project began, the region had no connectivity with the outside world by telephone or road, and that patients had to be carried physically to the nearest hospital, a journey that could take four hours. They also said there was no electricity or water,” The Wall Street Journal reports. Last month, the environment ministry accused the builders of erecting structures without getting proper environmental clearances. Given that life at Lavasa has pretty much carried on as usual—recently, they hosted media and entertainment biggies, including tribal cause-supporting James Cameron at the INK conference—this will probably bolster its builders’ case in court, and possibly lead to a cameo appearance in Avatar 2.
Unexpected help for Lavasa hill town project [The Wall Street Journal]Tags: HCC, Lavasa, The Wall Street Journal