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Life Among The Fire

In the village Bokapahari, in India, thousands of people live in hell of permanent coal fires, earning about two dollars a day on sale of coal, which they stole from the state mines. The government has spent millions of dollars to build new apartments for them, but so far that people are in no hurry to move.

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1. Miners return home after a long day in a coal mine in the village Bokapahari.

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2. Coal fires almost on the surface of the earth means that barefoot is unlikely to get through. From the cracks break out the poisonous gases.

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3. Kids dig coal from the mine. The Government has spent $ 5 million to build 2,400 new housing units for residents Bokapahari, but residents say that they will not be able to earn money if they leave far away from the mine.

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4. Moreover, residents complain that the new apartments (2,7 x3, 3 meters) with an additional bathroom and a kitchen too small to fit in a family, comprising some 10 people. Photo: villagers gathering coal from the mine.

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5. The Government pays great attention to the process of revitalizing rural India. It has invested billions of dollars in economic development to improve the poor conditions endured by hundreds of millions of citizens. However, many of the government’s plans to help its citizens fail because of lack of reflection and poor performance. India continues to try to help individuals at the bottom of the social ladder. Right: Yalo Bhuia, who works in the mines Jara.

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6. Villagers carry baskets of coal. Representatives of the coal mine Bharat argue that the collectors of coal hinder and threaten their lives.

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7. Villagers Bokapahari argue that the real reason the government wants to resettle them lies in the fact that it wants to expand the mine to produce coal, where they now live. In the photo: people talk about the problems of pollution in the village of Kudzhama Basti, a few kilometers from Bokapahari.

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8. However, the government insists that their first task is to care about public safety. Although they did not deny the fact that they are going to mine coal near the village Bokapahari when residents finally deign to leave.

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9. People share a salary at the end of the day. Jara and the surrounding villages Bokapahari lies in the coal field area of 450 square kilometers, which is one of the largest coal development in India.

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10. Today, more than 70% of India’s electricity supply comes from coal. Faced with severe shortages of fuel for its power plants and growing cities, the Indian government is trying to increase production of coal.

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11. The Indian government started to resettle residents from dangerous areas after several incidents in which people, houses and entire sections of the road just collapsed to the ground. In 1996, several houses in the area collapsed into the ground within two hours.

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12. By 1999, representatives of local and national authorities have developed a plan to resettle people and transport roads and railways from the dangerous zones. Photo: resident of the village sits on a pile of coal.

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13. But only in 2007, construction began on the first residential complex for the village. 2,400 apartments, whose construction was completed a year ago, became the basis of the first settlement of the five that are planned for the village. Last year, the federal government has allocated nearly $ 2 billion to resettle 97 000 families who lived on the edge of flammable mines.

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14. Managing Director of the Department of Development Ajay Singh, in charge of a plan to relocate residents, said that it is the most difficult job, which he had for his entire 15-year career as an Administrative Officer.


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