Social Improvements and Opportunities
- By mid-2009 1,271 families comprising 6,301 people have moved into purpose-built quality housing, designed and located in consultation with the villagers. All houses have electricity. Each resettlement village has at least six community buildings (primary school, nursery school, village office and meeting hall, market, warehouse and rice mill). Four seed processing and storage facilities and four organic fertiliser facilities are located at various villages.
- In addition to schools, NTPC has provided dedicated housing for teachers in all villages, furniture for all schools; toys, bedding, mosquito nets and first aid kits for nursery schools; stationery and text books for primary schools. The company also provides financial support for teachers and lunch for all children attending school.
- Extensive all-season road networks have been built connecting villages to main roads to provincial centres.
- Resettled villagers now have a clean water supply close to their houses through the drilling of tube wells (one per five households) equipped with hand pumps. The water quality of the wells has been systematically checked prior to commissioning, and is regularly monitored by NTPC to ensure that the water is of good quality.
- The project has strengthened the Nakai Plateau Village Forestry Association (VFA) so that it can effectively undertake sustainable forest management and operate a profitable forest industry business that provides additional income to resettled families. The new VFA sawmill was used to produce furniture and house construction wood for the new villages. The project is now helping to develop handicraft production as an income generation activity and a shop to promote products. The VFA also operates a nursery to allow replanting and trading of seedlings.
- The project has built and equipped two health centres on Nakai. All villagers were given systematic health checks prior or shortly after relocation. Monthly clinics focusing on maternal and child health and health education are now held in each village. In addition the Project has rehabilitated four health centres and a district hospital, organised extensive training for health workers, and provided ambulances, cars, motorcycles, essential non-medical equipment.
- 650 fibreglass boats, together with life jackets and appropriate fishing gear, have been delivered to villagers to give them fair access to fishing grounds in the new reservoir.
- Specialised technical assistance is provided to help villagers maximise the potential of the agricultural land. Food support was provided for the first couple of years after relocation, but this is now necessary only for the most vulnerable families. Villagers are being encouraged to diversify farming through cash crops and forages for their livestock, and are receiving marketing support to complement production.
- Encouragement of alternative livelihoods including non-agricultural options such as wood processing, construction, tailoring, restaurants and food processing.
- Two Grievance Offices have been set up in Nakai and in Gnommalath to allow villagers affected by construction activities to express their concerns or requests.