- Government of Chhattisgarh
TRIBAL WELFARE SOCIETY
(HO: New Delhi)
East Zonal Office
A/3, Indrajeet Complex; High Court Road
Bilaspur, Pin 495-001. (Chhattisgarh)
GOVERNMENT PLAYING WITH RIGHTS OF POOR TRIBALS
State Government of Chhattishgarh in India, is playing with the property rights of tribals, which are guaranteed to them by the Constitution of India. Taking benefit of the century old land acquisition act, state is acting as a property dealer, by forcibly acquiring their irrigated agricultural land and displacing thousands of tribals from their roots, all in the name of development, which has failed to reach them. Past experience so far has proved that tribals have been the victims of development and not its beneficiaries.
While the red carpet welcome is accorded to the powerful industrial houses, lots of sops offered including giving them mining rights to virtually loot the natural resources, safely stored in the womb of mother earth since billions of years, the poor tribals are beaten with sticks and even their voice is silenced by firing live rounds on them. There are strong opinions that all this gimmicks in the name of development are played, using corrupt practices by the politicians for their individual monetary gains at the cost of eating away the rights of the poor tribals. All these happening in a state of India, ranked at the top of the most corrupt nation of the world by Transparency International.
At Lohandiguda in Bastar area of Chhattisgarh state of India, on the road from Jagdalpur to famous Chitrakut Water Falls, the eyes of TATAs have fallen to construct their proposed 5 MTA Steel Plant. As per the provisions of the Constitution of India, the resolve of the village council is supreme. No body can play with the resolve of the tribal village council. However, contrary to those provisions, state government acted as the agent of the private industrial houses, did not bothered to educate the tribals about the importance of public hearing at a village council to manage the favorable resolve of the village council at the 3rd and 4th attempt. It is stated here that on both the first two attempts, they had miserably failed. The public hearings were held under fortified conditions with heavy deployment of armed police and administrative officials. Political masters also poked their nose to influence poor tribals in the name of their development. No social workers, no NGOs nor any Human Rights Activists were allowed to go to those villages because of the fear of being exposed. Why transparency is not put to practice when larger public interest is at stake. Why government has failed to discharge its lawful duties to protect the interest of the poor citizens of the state and more particularly why it is making mockery of the property rights of the poor tribals that are guaranteed to them by the virtue of constitutional provisions.
A petition to the Hon’ble Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh may save poor tribals from being forcibly displaced.
We, the undersigned, are upset to learn that your government is going ahead to forcibly acquire prime located irrigated land of poor illiterate tribals.
We are also disturbed to learn that despite the tribals enjoy guaranteed property rights by virtue of constitutional provisions, your government is bent upon to forcibly acquire their land. How the mockery is of the constitutional provisions can be made has been demonstrated at the public hearings conducted by district authorities under fortified situations, without maintaining transparency.
There are allegations that your government, dancing to the tunes of the industrialists is moving ahead to acquire 6500 Acres of land for a 5 MTA steel plant where as at Orissa, same industrial house requires only 1940 Acres for a bigger 7 NTA plant.
What is the guarantee that development of tribals will take place when the past experience has proved that tribals are the victims of development and not its beneficiaries.
We earnestly appeal to you to please do not allow any body to play with the rights of tribals, Please spare them from forcibly uprooting, and explore those areas where there is no development and enough non farm land is available
We also appeal to you to please ensure that the natural wealth stored in the womb of mother earth since billions of earth is used for the welfare of the people at large and not allowed to fill the coffers of industrialists, as is done at present.
The PROTECT THE PROPERTY RIGHTS OF POOR TRIBALS petition to Government of Chhattisgarh was written by Pravin Patel and is in the category Human Rights at GoPetition.