Sunday, December 16, 2007

Tribal leader alleges harassment of Tata Steel protesters

"Pravin Patel"

The news is not new nor surprising to me in the light of the fact that what is going on at Bastar. Tribals who enjoy special privileges for the protection of their property rights are forcefully denied those rights by the very authorities who are duty bound to protect the same. The harassment of the tribals at the hands of the District administration is nothing new and the recent excesses committed on tribals are part of the same pressure exercising game. The so called 60% land already acquired is another bogus fact and only on paper. The said land is acquired sitting in the closed doors whereas the fact is that the majority of tribals are dead against the same. It is not a secret how the money is paid in to the bank accounts of the tribals whose land are targeted for forcible land grabbing and not acquisition as per the rule and the constitutional provisions.

Yes, government has stepped up the forcible acts on the innocent tribals which is evident in shape of their illegal detention by forcing them to sit at the police station the whole night when they were en-route to Raipur to meet His Excellency, the Governor of Chhattisgarh to tell them their vows and complain against the excesses committed on them by the district authorities. This is a very serious matter and all those who work for the rights of the people should raise a strong voice of protest.

Everybody knows that a huge majority of tribals at Lohandiguda are not interested to part away with their land. The moves of the government to anyhow hammer its decision on the heads of tribals can boomerang. We should not be surprised if there is a repeation of the ugly scenes at Lohandiguda as has been witnessed at Kalinga Nagar in Orissa or Nandigram in West Bengal.Who is cooking up the stories is no more a secret, as tomorrow, we may be told that there was no detention at all and all those tribals willingly stepped out of the Raipur bound bus and had taken shelter in the police station. Every thing is possible, when one is bent upon to misuse the constitutional power vesting in his hand. This is how the mockery is made by the very authorities who are dutybound to protect the rights of the tribals.

Entire game is played to loot the natural resources of Bastar in the name of development. Big games are played at the top in the name of development of tribals and what happens in reality unfolds a drama where we will see many new chapters to be enacted.One should visit Bastar to see how mockery of rules are made in the largest democracy of the world.

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