Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Call for Jan Sansad of farmers, landless workers on April 9 against new Andhra capital at Vijaywada

Proposed area of new Andhra capital
By Our Representative
The National Alliance of People's Movements (NAPM), apex body of tens of rights-based organizations across India, has called for a major struggle against the controversial land acquisition bill around the growing opposition to the proposed new Andhra Padesh capital in Guntur district, next to Vijaywada. Calling farmers and landless workers to flood Vijaywada on April 9 and join the Jan Sansad or People's Parliament, NAPM has given the slogan “Stop Corporate Loot of Land!” for the struggle.
Saying that the struggle would “expose the realities of the new greenfield capital of Andhra Pradesh", the NAPM has demanded that the Andhra government should “stop massive acquisition and ‘pooling’ of prime farming land” to build Amravati, the name given to the new capital.
The NAPM said, “The issue of right over land has once again become the national question. Promulgation of the ordinance to amend Land Acquisition Act, 2013 (now called the new Land Bill) has sharply brought out the conflict between the anti-people government backed by corporates and the toiling people of this country.”
It added, “The attempts to reverse the achievements by people’s movements through years of struggles against unjust land acquisition, some of which were included in the Land Acquisition Act, 2013, are going to not only create situations of crisis among the land-dependent people but will also seriously threaten our food security and environment.”
According to NAPM, “A manifestation of such a crisis can be seen in the Guntur district of Andhra Pradesh. Blatantly flouting the recommendations of the Sivaramakrishna Committee for new Capital, the Andhra government is going ahead with the plans for greenfield capital in a region which has thriving agricultural economy of Rs 1000 crore, 120 different crop varieties, 85 % small and marginal farmers, including women entrepreneurs who earn Rs.200-700 per day.”
“The planned capital development will take 30-50,000 acres of multi-crop farm land from 29 villages, affecting 2 lakh plus population in first phase and is expected to go up to 1,25,000 acres in subsequent phases”, the NAPM said, adding, “The land pooling scheme, meant to be voluntary, is being used to forcefully acquire land. Minimal and insufficient cash compensation is being provided to farmers but the real gains are for the real estate developers and to a Singapore firm which is to get complete transfer of autonomy.”
“This situation in Andhra gets even worse with the new central land bill hanging over the heads of the farmers which is attempting to do away with all pro-farmer safeguards. Clearly, the Make in India campaign is all about unmaking and destroying rural India”, the NAPM said.
Calling upon activists to participate in the Jan Sansad on April 9, the NAPM said, those who will lead to event would include Medha Patkar, M G Devasahayam, Dr. Sunilam and B Ramakrishnam Raju, National Convener, NAPM.

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