The Nation



Villagers protest over high-voltage power lines

About 200 hundred Paungde residents from western Bago region staged a protest yesterday morning against the positioning of high-voltage power lines over a residential area.

The residents marched around for over two hours demanding the authorities move the transmission tower recently installed on 44th Street and spare the residential area the potential hazards of 230,000-volt power lines running over their houses.

"The first survey team arranged for the 230,000V power lines to run from the original route, across the fields near Ohn Thone Pin village. But, now they are trying to run [the power lines] over 60 houses on 44th Street when they started installing the towers. I learnt that the construction team saves 3 to 6 towers by changing the route. Even though they will be able to save money by doing this, they have no consideration for the public," said Chit Ko, a resident of Paungde who participated in the protest.

"Another thing is that trees could be cut down to run the power lines. If there is a natural danger, the 230,000V power lines will be over the houses. It is unthinkable if they fall down. The public are worried about it even now," he added.

The demonstration was staged after submitting an official request to the authorities.

The residents have submitted a complaint letter to the respective ministry but no significant changes have been made. They plan to continue the protests if the ministry continues the project and open protest camps if necessary, the residents say.

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