It is no mob as the headline says. These villagers have been informing the 
police since two years it seems. But nothing has been done. Such private 
operations by individual owners are on the increase in Orissa where villagers 
have no support from anyone and left to express resistance in their own way. 

Mob burns alive 7 in Orissa
Hrusikesh Mohanty, TNN | May 1, 2011, 04.23am IST
BERHAMPUR: Seven persons were burnt to death by a mob at an illegal stone 
crusher unit near a village in Ganjam district. Police suspect that the 
gruesome incident was the fallout of a long-running dispute between the unit 
owners and residents of Sheragada block's Badaguda village, 60 km from 

Police said the deceased included three owners of the crusher unit -- Tushar 
Kanta Padhy (34), Pitabash Padhy (30) and Prasanna Kumar Patnaik (30). A fourth 
victim was identified as Siba Kuamr Padhy (40). Three other bodies, including 
that of a woman, were yet to be identified. Police suspect they were employees 
of the unit. 

Police said the violence took place late on Friday when a large number of 
villagers attacked a house where the victims were staying. The mob probably 
used diesel and detonators stocked at the crusher unit to burn the house, they 

A villager said residents of Badaguda were opposed to the establishment of the 
unit and stone quarrying near their village. On Friday, there was a rumour that 
the unit owners were sending some goons to teach the villagers a lesson. This 
triggered the mob frenzy, the villager added. 

Police, however, refused to confirm this. "Although there was a dispute over 
the crusher unit, but we are still investigation about the sudden provocation 
for the violence," said DIG (southern range) RK Sharma. He added that a 
forensic team and sniffer dog were pressed into service for speeding the 

At least five platoons of police forces were deployed at the village to 
maintain law and order. "The situation at the village is quite normal now. No 
one has been arrested as yet," said SP (Ganjam) Nitinjit Singh. 

The incident has once brought illegal stone quarries and crusher units 
operating in Ganjam district. The crusher unit near Badaguda village was 
established in the name of Prasanna Kumar Patnaik. It, however, started 
operations without taking permission from the state pollution control board. 
The stone quarry at Sindhiguda, near the village, was also found to be 
operation on the sly. "Although, Patnaik had taken a one-year lease to operate 
the stone quarry at Sindhiguda, but he did not have any agreement on operations 
with the administration," said tehsildar (Sheragada) S.Ch. Mohapatra. "We had 
given a no-objection certificate to set up the unit, but no consent was given 
to operate the unit," said assistant environmental engineer of the regional 
office of the state pollution control board office in Berhampur M M Murmu. 

Last year, illegal quarrying by crusher unit owners also came to light in 
Digapahndi area when a person died in blasting near Bhismagiri. Tehsildar of 
Digapahandi had cracked down at least five such quarry lease holders in the 
area, sources said. 

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