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Jul 31, 2009

Factory construction ongoing at Belize City Lagoon

Story PictureThe Krooman Lagoon, the only reserve within Belize City limits, has been in the spotlight for the past month and it still is. Tuesday’s Cabinet decided that a portion of the Krooman Lagoon that was sold to Jitendra Chawla, the owner of Xtra House, will be taken back and Chawla would be compensated for the nine point three acres of land for which he paid close to seventy thousand dollars in June and was awaiting title. Area Representative for Collet, Patrick Faber’s view is that the filled portion will be used for the people of Collet. On Wednesday, Prime Minister Dean Barrow said that any plans for the lagoon and surrounding area had to be consistent with the objectives of the South Side Poverty Alleviation Program. It seemed like a closed and done deal; Chawla gets back his money and government, the land. But that is easier said than done. Chawla, better known as Jack Charles, has not backed down and has continued to construct his potato chip factory. As far as our crew could see today, he is using a smaller portion of the land he originally paid for, but it still stretches across a part of the lagoon he has filled with clay. A crane and trucks belonging to Matus and Matus Engineering could be seen placing columns while the construction work continues full steam ahead at the site at mile one behind the Xtra House warehouse on the Western Highway. Chawla associates say that the construction is on land he received title from the previous P.U.P. administration; Chawla himself denied News Five an interview, until he receives some unspecified documents. So what’s the next move? A verification is expected to be done of the area that Chawla continues to work at.

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