But, locals and environmentalists are strongly opposing the project. As the previous attempts by the company met with resistance from the local population, NCCPPL, which was planning to put boundary stones on the land acquired by it, sought police protection for carrying out the work.
Following this, the district administration deployed over 2,000 policemen at the site. Police personnel have been deployed in the neighbouring villages also to stop the villagers from reaching the site.
However, on Wednesday, around 5,000 villagers, mostly fishermen, reached the site and disrupted the on-going work. This resulted in a clash between the villagers and the police, who said they initially used teargas and lathis to scatter the mob. Police have also taken into custody local MLA Sairaj, who was trying to visit the site.
Environmentalists say the project will have an adverse impact on the livelihoods of thousands of fishermen in the surrounding 24 villages. They claim that the land has been allotted to the project in violation of National Environmental Policy and the National Wetland Action Plan.
NCCPPL stated that there was no rehabilitation issue with regard to the project as the government had not acquired any private land.
"NCCPL would do everything possible to address the genuine concerns of the local people regarding setting up of the power plant. NCCPPL is also open to any dialogue with parties concerned regarding apprehensions, if any," the company stated in a press release.
Meanwhile, the issue rocked the Assembly with the opposition members stalling the proceedings of the House demanding a discussion on the incident.
State home minister, Sabita Indra Reddy, who reviewed the situation said 45 policemen were also injured in the incident. Leader of the Opposition and Telugu Desam Party president, N Chandrababu Naidu has decided to visit Sompeta on Thursday to meet the family members of the victims killed in police firing.