IFC is considering providing an "A" loan to OCL, an existing IFC client formerly known as Orissa Cement Limited, to partly finance establishment of a 1.35 million tons per annum stand alone cement grinding plant at Kulapachuria village, Salboni Block, West Medinipur in the Indian State of West Bengal.
[IFC documentation states that The Project has been categorized as A given it may result in significant adverse environmental and social risks and impacts that are diverse and irreversible which are associated with various applicable Performance Standards. More specifically, these relate to; i) land acquisition of 154 acres (62 ha apprx) with the resulting economic displacement affecting 321 households; (ii) economic displacement of 113 Scheduled Tribe (ST) households that are defined as Indigenous People (IP) as per PS 7; and (iii) potential impacts on communities immediately neighboring the Project site due to an increase in traffic, an influx of labor and emissions and noise during construction and operations.]
APPLICABLE SOCIAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL STANDARDS
According to the IFC, the following Performance standards are triggered:
PS 1 Assessment and Management of Environmental and Social Risks and Impacts
PS 2 - Labor and Working Conditions
PS 3 - Resource Efficiency and Pollution Prevention
PS 4 Community Health, Safety and Security
PS 5 Land Acquisition and Involuntary Resettlement
PS 7 Indigenous People
PS 8 Cultural Heritage
IFC documentation states the 154-acre (approximately 62 hectares) project site is largely barren with some parcels of cultivated land and includes scattered parcels of forest land that total 4 hectares and therefore will not have adverse impacts on Biodiversity and Natural Resources.
ENVIRONMENTAL AND HUMAN RIGHTS RISK ASSESSMENT
The following analysis is based on a Rapid Environmental Impact Assessment study that was commissioned by OCL in order to assess the likely impacts that would result from the proposed project. The two-part assessment was conducted by Envirotec East (P), Ltd., Kolkata and can be accessed on the IFC's website.
IFC states that OCL plans to employ 175 persons permanently, of which about 130 will be workers. The IFC's Environmental and Social Review for the project further states that OCL has Human Resource Policies and Practices that are generally consistent with IFC Performance Standards but does not provide details. Importantly, this documents notes that these policies apply to employees only and states The Company will develop, for this plant, additional policies compliant with PS 2 provisions particularly related to contract workers.
The environmental impact assessment states that [r]isks to human health in the first place arise from major accidents. As such, IFC pledges that [p]lant safety measures would form an integral part of the environment protection plan of the proposed plant. Worker's safety would be of the highest degree of concern so as to avoid any personal injury or untoward accident. In-built safety features of the plant and machinery would be made adequate in order to avoid hazardous events causing damage to life and property.
Additionally, IFC states that, there are also potential risks related to labor influx into the project site during construction, which may put pressure on local resources such as water, health and sanitation facilities and fuel wood availability. During construction, up to 500 workers are expected to be located at the construction site. In mitigation, IFC maintains that OCL will thus develop a Labor Influx Management plan to manage associated impacts including measures to minimize the risk of community exposure to disease due to influx of laborers. IFC states the OCL will ensure that appropriate amenities/facilities for contract labor and employees are provided during both the construction and operational phases. This will include the requirement for: appropriate facilities and amenities including housing, toilets, washing and cleaning water of appropriate quality, potable drinking water and cooking fuel; treated sanitary waste water to meet the World Bank Group's environmental healthy safety guidelines prior to discharge; and assess potential host community impacts on account of an influx of labor, and implement mitigation measures.
The following questions may be relevant to determining whether you or your community's labor rights have been adversely affected by the investment project:
RIGHT TO WATER
According to the 2012 Human Rights in India Status Report, the combined effects of inadequate sanitation, unsafe water supply and poor personal hygiene are responsible for 88% of childhood deaths from diarrhea. Additionally, 21% of the communicable diseases in India are related to unsafe water. Further, more than 20% of Scheduled Caste persons do not have access to safe drinking water and the vast majority of them depend on the goodwill of dominant castes for access to water from public wells.
The environmental impact assessment states that the plant will need fresh water to the tune of 900 cum/day for meeting its daily water demand. In addition, treated wastewater to the tune of 175 cum/day will also be use[d] for non-critical purposes. As such, the assessment states that ground water will be used for meeting the daily water demand of the plant. The neighborhood of the site does not have any dependable surface water source and ground water is the primary source of water in the area. Ground water will be drawn only on getting consent from the concerned body [State Water Investigation Directorate). The EIA notes that the Directorate usually issues their Consent considering all relevant aspects. Based on this, it concludes: Thus no impact on ground water hydrology is expected.
If the plant's activities result in diminished quantity or quality of groundwater for local residents, it may result in a violation of their right to water. The following questions may be relevant to determining whether you or your community's right to water has been adversely affected by the investment project:
RIGHT TO FOOD
According to the environmental impact assessment, the project area covers 252 villages in Medinipur West District. About 49.87% of the study area consists of agricultural land. The social impact assessment further indicates that the land take has resulted in 178 of the 188 surveyed households becoming landless. The key livelihood impact due to the land acquisition relates to agriculture and share cropping. This is alarming considering that India faces a situation of on-going food insecurity, where 21% of India's total population remains undernourished, with women, girls and older persons being the most affected [as] 42% of children under five are underweight and 59% are stunted, as stated in the 2012 Human Rights Status Report in India.
The following questions may be relevant to determining whether you or your community's right to food has been adversely affected by the investment project:
RIGHT TO HEALTH
According to the 2012 Human Rights in India Status Report, India spends only 4.4% of its budget on health, which is far below the global median of 11.5%. As a consequence, India's health-care infrastructure is sub-standard and inadequate, lacking doctors and hospital beds. There are six doctors and nine hospital beds per 10,000 people. Only 15% of the population has health insurance, making quality healthcare in private hospitals inaccessible for a vast majority of the population.
[According to the environmental impact assessment, the project study area is high density populated with the total population of 129,986 (as of the 2001 census). Due to the high population density, health services in the area may be overburdened. According to a recent journal article in the Journal of Law, Policy, and Globalization, a recent study comparing levels of access to health services across 16 states of the country places West Bengal in the lowest category alongside Rajasthan, Orissa, Bihar and Assam. This is likely because [r]ural health services which form the backbone of public health system, is lacking in basic infrastructure, staff and essential medicines.
According to recent reports, the [b]looming of cement factories has resulted in the environmental deterioration and in turn degrades the human health status in whole world. Studies have shown adverse respiratory health effects in the people exposed to cement dust, exemplified in increased frequency of respiratory problems. Cement industry is one of the 17 most polluting industries listed by the central pollution control board. It is the major source of particulate matter, SO2, NOx and CO2 emissions. Cement dust contains heavy metals like chromium, nickel, cobalt, lead and mercury pollutants hazardous to the biotic environment with impact for vegetation, human health, animal health and ecosystem. The environmental impact assessment states that during operation the plant operation will emit gaseous pollutants through stack, which have the potential to deteriorate the air quality of the area. Stack emissions would be constituted of mainly Particulate matters, SO2, & NOX.
Additionally, the plant will be primarily fueled by coal. According to Urban Emissions, Coal-fired power comes with significant costs. Most importantly for human health, combustion of coal releases emissions of sulfur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen oxides (NOx), Particulate Matter (PM), carbon monoxide (CO), volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and various trace metals like mercury, into the air through stacks that can disperse this pollution over large areas. Chronic and acute exposure to these pollutants has health impacts that include respirator illnesses, compromised immune systems, cardiovascular conditions, and premature death.
With respect to nitrogen oxides, [s]mall levels of NOx can cause nausea, irritated eyes and/or nose, fluid forming in lungs and shortness of breath. Breathing in high levels of NOx can lead to: rapid, burning spasms; swelling of throat; reduced oxygen intake; a larger buildup of fluids in lungs and/or death. NOx, plus other [ground]-level ozone, can cause other major respiratory problems in high levels. It can also react with aerosols from aerosols cans and also cause respiratory problems. Furthermore, NOx can cause visual impairment in the area affects by NOx. Additionally, [a] great deal of attention has focused on particulate matter (PM) pollution, due to their severe health effects, especially fine particles. Several epidemiological studies have indicated a strong association between elevated concentrations of inhalable particles (PM10 and PM2.5) and increased mortality and morbidity.
Additionally, IFC states that the project is located in an earthquake zone with risk of high intensity earthquakes and prone to floods and cyclones but maintains that OCL has designed the project taking into account measures to ensure that the risks from these natural events are not exacerbated for communities resident in the immediate vicinity of the plant. In addition to appropriate design of plant and facilities, OCL must review the District Disaster Management Plan and prepare an Emergency Preparedness and Response Plan for both on and off site emergencies. IFC further provides that the emergency preparedness plan will be communicated to communities and stakeholders alike and drills will be undertaken on emergency response that will involve nearby communities that will include OCL participation as required.
Lastly, IFC states that during construction and operation of the project, OCL will employ security guards to guard the facility. Although IFC states that OCL will implement formal procedures related to screening of candidates' past records, security personnel objectives and permissible actions, training in avoidance of abusive conduct, the use of fire arms and managing of situations where fire arms may be used, recording and investigating security incidents; investigations of bona fide complaints against security personnel and disciplinary actions, there remains a risk for potential violence against employees or members of local communities. IFC states that a grievance mechanism will be defined for aggrieved members of community or employees in the event of a violation of the code for security personnel.
Any of the aforementioned adverse health effects may place additional stress on an already vulnerable healthcare situation. The following questions may be relevant to determining whether you or your community's right to health has been adversely affected by the project:
RIGHT TO A HEALTHY ENVIRONMENT
According to the Government of India, cement manufacturing is an energy intensive process. Consuming energy from fossil fuels such as oil and coal creates carbon dioxide, the most important Greenhouse Gas causing climate change. In industrial sector, cement industry is the second largest emitter of carbon dioxide and accounts for 5 per cent of global manmade carbon dioxide emissions, of which 60 per cent is from the chemical process and 40 per cent from burning fuel.
With respect to the current investment project, the environmental impact assessment reports that pollutants in the form of solids, liquids, and gases are expected to be generated from various Units as envisaged under the Cement Grinding Plant. Release of such pollutants without proper care may affect the environment adversely. Pollution of the environment not only adversely affects human beings, flora, and fauna, but also shortens the life of plant and equipment.
According to recent studies in India, the [c]ement industry is one of the most important industries involved in air pollution. The aerial discharge of cement factories consist of Particulate matter, Sulphur dioxide and Nitrogen oxides producing continuous visible clouds which ultimately settle on the vegetation, soil and effects whole biotic life around, as a result the whole ecosystem around the cement factory is subjected to extraordinary stress and abuse. Further, [c]ement dust contains heavy metals like chromium, nickel, cobalt, lead and mercury pollutants hazardous to the biotic environment with impact for vegetation, human health, animal health and ecosystem.
The Project environmental impact assessment recognizes that the [c]ement industry is known for its contribution to air pollution. The pollutants, mainly particle matter, would be emitted either from the stack or from storage. Sources of air pollution can be mainly divided into two groups: process and non-process. Process emissions would be those which would be emitted during production/operation of the plant, while non-process emissions would be due to different material handling facilities. The main air pollutant from the process and non-process emissions would be SPM.
During the construction phase, the environmental impact assessment asserts that [t]he main sources of emissions are the movement of equipment at the site and dust emitted during earthwork, foundation work, and exhaust emissions from vehicles/ equipment deployed during construction phase thus resulting in marginal increase in the levels of SO2, NOX, SPM, CO and unburnt hydrocarbons. Further, the environmental impact assessment states that, during operation the plant operation will emit gaseous pollutants through stack, which have the potential to deteriorate the air quality of the area. Stack emissions would be constituted of mainly Particulate matters, SO2, & NOX.
The environmental impact assessment states that [i]mpact on water quality during construction phase may be due to non-point discharges of solid from soil loss and sewage generated from the construction workforce stationed at the site. However, the assessment maintains that during operation, no wastewater is expected from the process. Domestic wastewater along with wastewater from non-processing areas of the plant will be treated in a well-designed wastewater treatment plant and such wastewater will be used in non-critical purposes within plant premises. Furthermore, the assessment states that solid waste generated from pollution control systems will be recycled into the process. There is no discharge of liquid effluents onto the land.
The environmental impact assessment indicates that coal will be used as the major fuel in the plant. According to Urban Emissions, Coal-fired power comes with significant costs to the environment and human health. The water runoff from coal washeries carries pollution loads of heavy metals that contaminate ground water, rivers and lakes thus affecting aquatic flora and fauna. Fly-ash residue and pollutants settle on soil contaminating areas and are especially harmful to agricultural activities.
Transportation of Hazardous Materials
In the cement manufacturing process, clinker, gypsum, slag coal, and furnace oil are required to grind cement. According to a recent report by the EU's Country Programme EIDHR, [b]y the very nature of the cement industry, it requires transportation of ore to the factory and final product from the factory to its depots and sales network. Large numbers of trucks not only damages the roads, but also increases dust emissions. Indeed, the environmental impact assessment states that fly ash will be transported to the plant from source through bulk carriers and pumped into the silo. The requisite coal will be sourced from the Raniganj area of West Bengal, which is located within 150 km distance and will be transported to the plant site by road. Further, if cement markets are far away from the plant (more than 150 to 200 km), then transportation through rail network would become an economically viable option for the plant.
The following questions may be relevant to determining whether you or your community has suffered a violation of your right to a healthy environment as a result of the investment project:
RIGHT TO PROPERTY
Development projects can result in both physical and economic displacement of local communities. According to the 2012 Human Rights Status Report for India, experts estimate the number of those displaced by such projects since 1947 is between 60 and 65 million. Of these displaced, over 40% are tribals and another 40% consist of Dalits and other rural poor. The National Human Rights Commission's (NHRC) stakeholders' report for India's second Universal Periodic Review in 2012 stated that NHRC's monitoring finds that usually those displaced [as a result of development projects] are given neither adequate relief nor the means of rehabilitation.
For the current investment project, the West Bengal Industrial Development Corporation acquired 154.43 acres (approximately 62 hectares) of land under eminent domain on account of the project and leased it to OCL. IFC holds that although no physical displacement has resulted on account of the land acquisition, 321 titleholders from 4 Mouzas/villages (Durgadaspur, Rana, Kulapachuria and Jamdargar) have been economically displaced. The land acquisition has also caused loss of livelihood for 14 sharecropper households. According to IFC documentation, the acquired land was largely barren with some parcels of rain fed cultivated land. All affected households supplemented their income with either agricultural wage labor or wage labor in the neighboring towns (e.g., Medinipur/ Kharagpur/ Jhargram, etc.). The land acquired is 8.7% of the total village land of these four villages and 6.26%, 2.81%, 24.93% and 11.40% of the available land of Durgadaspur, Rana, Kulapachuria and Jamdargar Mouzas/villages respectively.
According to the environmental impact assessment, the project area covers 252 villages in Medinipur West District. About 49.87% of the study area consists of agricultural land. The social impact assessment further indicates that the land take has resulted in 178 of the 188 surveyed households becoming landless. The key livelihood impact due to the land acquisition relates to agriculture and share cropping. IFC states that compensation for land at replacement cost has been paid to all titleholders. There are two households however, which have not been paid their compensation for lack of the necessary documents, even though the land is already in the company's possession. IFC states that OCL is assisting those households in updating their documents. Furthermore, IFC states that 14 sharecropper households have received only crop compensation and have not been compensated for loss of livelihood. IFC maintains that the Company is committed to compensating these sharecroppers in a manner consistent with the provision of IFC performance standard 5.
In mitigation, IFC states that OCL has prepared a livelihood restoration entitlement matrix which includes provision for; a) providing jobs, where feasible; b) skill development and income generation training to all available and willing adults (women and men); c) income generation activity support especially to tribal families; and d) special provisions for all vulnerable groups including Indigenous peoples. The livelihood restoration measures are will be finalized in consultation with the affected households.
While the entitlement framework will be implemented for the 188 households that were initially surveyed, IFC states that it will also be extended to the remaining affected households from the total 321 households, contingent on their ability to demonstrate their credentials. Further, IFC pledges that OCL will implement measures for ongoing monitoring and undertake a completion audit of the resettlement activities, which will identify any remaining gaps and corresponding corrective actions if applicable.
The following questions may be relevant to determining whether you or your community's right to property and adequate housing has been adversely affected by the investment project:
RIGHT TO CULTURE
IFC states that, in addition to the economic displacement of affected titleholders, the villagers stated loss of one temple and increase in distance to forests. IFC states that OCL will replace the temple to a location to be identified in consultation with the community. Although IFC states that there was no mention made of any place of heritage, sacred grove or shrine, etc., being lost, this fails to address the fact that loss of a temple may not be adequately remedied by a replacement. The IFC further states that a cremation ground was within the land acquired by OCL, but maintains that it has been specifically kept outside the boundary wall of the plant to facilitate community's ability to continue accessing the site..
The following questions may be relevant to determining whether you or your community's right to culture has been adversely affected by the project:
RIGHTS OF INDIGENOUS PEOPLES
In India, it is reported that almost 40% of displaced persons in the country are from the tribal communities. Many of these tribes have been displaced from the forests without any proper compensation and legal procedure, and the replacement infrastructure, land, and facilities for farming that are available and accessible to the tribal communities are not insufficient. Furthermore, most of these communities' livelihoods and cultures are inextricably linked to the land, rendering them disproportionately vulnerable to negative social effects of displacement.
IFC states that of the total 321 affected titleholders, 113 belong to the Santhal Scheduled Tribe. Of the 188 households surveyed, 86 households, or 46% belonged to the Santhal Scheduled Tribe. All affected sharecropper families also belong to the Santhal Scheduled tribe. All affected tribal households speak Ol Chiki'- the Santhal language and, according to IFC documentation, also speak in Bengali. IFC documents states that several households have distinct cultural practices and some tribal households continue to maintain a collective attachment to their locality and prefer not to live in mixed communities. Further, the SA [social impact assessment] indicates that the tribal families were distinctly economically worse off than the non-tribal families. However, the scheduled tribe households have also adopted the cultural practices and rituals of the majority community with whom they reside. In light of the distinct identity and socio-cultural practices, the affected scheduled tribe households have been considered indigenous people in accordance with IFC's Performance Standards.
Despite this recognition of the status as indigenous people, the IFC maintains that their ownership of land is not governed by traditional or customary tenure and notes that all affected tribal households had individual land titles. IFC documentation states: No tribal families were physically displaced on account of land acquisition. Further, though there is dependence of communities on nearby forests, only scattered sections of forests totaling some 4 [hectares] has been acquired. As per the [social impact assessment] survey findings, there is no material loss of access to forest resources on account of the Project because the forest is degraded. While some project-affected families (both tribal and non-tribal) have shifted out of the area, there has been no displacement of tribal households from lands and natural resources subject to traditional ownership or under customary use on account of land acquisition for the Project. Furthermore, there have been no significant impacts on critical cultural heritage. No place of heritage, sacred grove or shrine is being impacted by the Project.
IFC also maintains that the nature of the projects impacts on the indigenous peoples is broadly similar to impacts on other affected groups. However, it notes, the affected IP households have been recognized as vulnerable and additional measures are provided in the entitlement matrix for loss of livelihood, as in case of non Indigenous Affected Households. Importantly, IFC documentation state that a separate Indigenous People's Development Plan will not be prepared, as the indigenous peoples affected will be considered as one of several potentially vulnerable groups addressed in the Social Impact Assessment, Community Development Plan, Stakeholder Engagement Plan and Resettlement Plan and Entitlements.
Recognizing that the economic condition of the scheduled tribe households is distinctly worse than other caste and community groups, the IFC states that OCL's "Entitlement Framework" includes specific provisions for tribal families for their economic rehabilitation. In addition to the Entitlement Framework, the IFC states that OCL has developed a Community Development Plan with interventions targeted specifically at tribal families, which includes activities for the development of drinking water, health and sanitation programs, capacity building programs, programs focused on women and indigenous peoples' households, and a strategy for ensuring their participation. According to the IFC, the Community Development Plan has been prepared in consultation with the tribal families.
The following questions may be relevant to determining whether you or your community's rights have been adversely affected by the project:
RIGHTS OF MARGINALIZED AND DISCRIMINATED AGAINST GROUPS
IFC states that, of the 188 households surveyed as part of the social impact assessment, 40 (21%) are headed by women. In addition, 34 vulnerable households have been affected which include abandoned/single women, below poverty line titleholders and women headed households with no support.
The following questions may be relevant to determining whether you or your community's right to a healthy environment has been adversely affected by the investment project:
IFC is evaluating partial A-Loan of US$ 40 million to finance the project. The total project cost is estimated at US$102 million. The balance of the funding requirement will be met through rupee debt and internal accruals. An "A" loan for IFC's own account means the IFC provides a direct loan for the project from its own funds, and keeps that debt on its books until the sponsoring company repays in full, again directly to IFC.]
India with a capacity of 3.8 million tons per annum (MTPA). The Company, formerly known as Orissa Cement Limited, started manufacturing cement in 1952 and also manufactures refractories.
OCL is a part of the Dalmia Group and is publicly traded on the Bombay Stock Exchange and the National Stock Exchange. Dalmia Cement (Bharat) Limited, the flagship company of the Dalmia Group, is the largest shareholder in OCL with a 45% stake. The Dalmia family collectively controls 70% in OCL. The remaining 30% is owned by the general public and institutional investors.
PAST BANK FUNDING
OCL is an existing IFC client, having received a USD$ 50 million 'A' loan from IFC's own account in 2006 for a USD$170 million clinkerisation unit at the OCL cement works at Rajgangpur in district Sundergarh of Orissa. That project was rated an environmental and social category 'B."
PAST ENVIRONMENTAL COMPLAINTS
According to a November 2012 article by the New Indian Express, aggrieved community members in the village of Lanjiberna and the nearby Kutra block of Orissa raised complaints against OCL India Ltd. for environmental pollution, claiming exposure to "health hazards due to flying dust" resulting from the company's mining operations was affecting over 10,000 people. These villagers subsequently sought relief from the Indian National Human Rights Commission alleging, among other things, that "with scant regard to the norms, the crusher is located at a stone's throw from Lanjiberna and frequent blasts lead to sound pollution and mud houses developed cracks" and that "[t]he groundwater table receded to unprecedented levels and in summer people faced water crisis."
PAST HUMAN RIGHTS ABUSES
No complaints have been filed to the IFC Compliance Advisor/Ombudsman.
However, in an external study done on land acquisition for an industrial zone to be built by OCL in West Bengal in 2007, researchers undertook "fieldworks in the villages of Kulipara, Kulapachuriya, Kamarmuri, Beucha, Kuchakola, and Panthorchati to study the impact of land acquisition for OCL." Their findings suggest that "almost all the villagers are engaged in agriculture full-time or part-time. But after losing their land to OCL many of these villagers have become daily wage labourer[s] or contract labourer[s]."
Furthermore, the report states that local villagers "were verbally promised by the OCL management during their negotiation process a permanent job for one member from each of these families' a promise that was endorsed by the government officials and local political leaders during that time" but which was never realized. The report goes on to state that "[a]ccording to the villagers there were a large number of landowners who were either reluctant or unwilling to give up their lands in exchange of money. Those people were persuaded and sometime coerced to sell their land to the company. In the end, all the landowners had sold their lands to the OCL."
Mr. DN Singh
Executive Director and Chief Financial Officer
11th Floor, Narain Manzil,
23 Barakhamba Road,
New Delhi -110001
IFC documentation states that OCL, along with the District Administration, "initially conducted several informal discussions with the affected communities after the land was identified for acquisition in 2009." IFC states that "during the course of the land acquisition process and in accordance with the applicable regulations, affected households were informed of the land acquisition and offered opportunities to lodge concerns." IFC notes that "there were multiple visits by Government Officials. A few Gram Sabha (village assembly) meetings were organized by the Government in 2008-09, and by OCL in 2009-10. A follow-up Gram Sabha meeting was organized in April 2012." IFC states that the feedback from these meetings was appropriately incorporated by OCL in environmental and social management plans.
IFC states that "[s]ubsequently, OCL's social impact consultants conducted additional stakeholder engagement activities at 4 mouzas/villages as part of the public consultation related to the social impact assessment study conducted in April 2012. The social impact assessment consultant conducted a series of stakeholder engagement activities including focused group discussions, participatory rapid appraisal and social mapping to identify impacts and community development needs. IFC states that altogether four focused group discussions were held from April 9-14, 2012 at the respective villages. These consultations were conducted in the local language in different hamlets in the affected villages. The consultant conducted these meetings in the presence of OCL representatives."
IFC further states that "the Participatory Rural Appraisal techniques utilized in these meetings provided an understanding of the needs of the communities. The social impact assessment has determined that OCL informed the affected villages about the proposed Project and OCL's plan with respect to corporate social responsibility activities. During the process of land acquisition, OCL also obtained the required No Objection Certificates from the relevant Gram Panchayats and Medinipur-Kharagpur Development Authority. A 'No Objection Certificate' is a certificate issued by a government agency or authority that states that there has been no objection to the covenants within. In India, No Objection Certificates are mandatory in order to obtain clearance from a local authority before construction can begin on in project in its jurisdiction. As a result, IFC states that the social impact assessment has identified the key primary and secondary stakeholders and potential impacts on the affected community." However, the social impact survey covered only 188 of the 321 affected Households because more than 100 households were not available in the village at the time of the survey.
IFC also states that the social impact assessment "provides a description of the Stakeholder Engagement Framework and the Community Grievance Redress Framework. The Grievance Redress Framework recommends creation of a grievance redress cell, comprised of representatives from the affected community, local elected body, OCL's representatives, NGOs and the local government." IFC further states that "OCL has prepared and locally disclosed a mitigation and community development framework that addresses the key concerns and expectations of the affected communities including the social impact assessment, the entitlement matrix, the community development plan and the environment and social action plan. Subsequent to the local disclosure of social and environmental information, OCL has engaged, consulted with, and raised the awareness of the affected communities about the Project's impacts and benefits." Additionally, IFC documentation states that "OCL representatives continue to: undertake additional consultations with the affected communities; document the consultation; and implement measures to address concerns and expectations expressed in the engagement process."
IFC also asserts that "OCL is committed to continue engaging with the affected communities to provide information on plant construction and operation, as well as safety and health related issues." To this end, OCL must "prepare a Stakeholder Engagement Plan to describe the OCL's approach for engaging with the affected communities and project stakeholders and implementation of a grievance mechanism. The plan includes: ongoing identification of stakeholder groups; a schedule/time frame for disclosure of project information (pre, during and post project implementation); staff and management resources to be allocated for implementation of the SEP; documentation of all consultations; a budget for developing relevant materials for the meetings; and descriptions of how stakeholder engagement activities will be incorporated into the OCL's management system." The IFC further states that OCL is also "enabling capacity building of affected communities by: facilitating development of community based organizations for effective dialogue with OCL; and facilitating development of women's self help groups for their empowerment, besides enabling income generating and livelihood activities."
ACCOUNTABILITY MECHANISM OF IFC
The Compliance Advisor Ombudsman (CAO) is the independent complaint mechanism and fact-finding body for people who believe they are likely to be, or have been, adversely affected by an IFC or MIGA- financed project. If you submit a complaint to the CAO, they may assist you in resolving a dispute with the company and/or investigate to assess whether the IFC is following its own policies and procedures for preventing harm to people or the environment. If you want to submit a complaint electronically, you can email the CAO at CAO@worldbankgroup.org. You can learn more about the CAO and how to file a complaint at http://www.cao-ombudsman.org/