Skip to main content

UPA works for Madhya Pradesh's BJP govt, colludes to pass land acquisition bill in Parliament, alleges NAPM

By Our Representative
The National Alliance for People’s Movements (NAPM), an apex body of more than dozen organizations across India, has alleged that the Rajya Sabha vote in favour of the Land Acquisition, Resettlement and Rehabilitation Bill was accomplished after agreeing to “three regressive amendments suggested by the Madhya Pradesh government and accepted by the UPA government.” It believes, “These amendments will take away the rights of the dam and canal affected people, even then hope is not lost on the struggling adivasis and farmers of the Narmada valley.”
Under the new amendment, the Social Impact Assessment (SIA) ahead of land acquisition “will not be applicable to irrigation projects”, and “land for land provision will not be applicable in irrigation projects.” Saying that this is “highly condemnable”, the statement says, “This is being done in the backdrop of three decades of struggle against 30 big dams, 135 medium dams and 3,000 small dams on the Narmada and its tributaries in the states of Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Maharashtra.”
It goes on to add, “Together these dams are affecting nearly five million people in three states and as of now not in a single project the satisfactory resettlement and rehabilitation has been done by the government. The Narmada Water Disputes Tribunal (NWDT) Award, 1979, which mandated five acres of land for land to every major sons for the Sardar Sarovar Dam affected families, a principle later accepted for some other dams too, is now under attack in collusion with Central and State governments.”
The statement quotes South Asia Network on Dams, Rivers and People (SANDRP) and other sources to say that 5,500 big dams across India have together displaced nearly 5.5 crore people and submerged 44,00,000 Hectares of land in 4,528 dams. “Nearly 47 percent of those displaced by these dams are adivasis / indigenous people. In such a scenario a move to leave out the irrigation projects from the realm of SIA and land for land provisions will be extremely unfortunate and a move which will hurt the farmers, workers, Dalits and tribals most”, it says.
Significantly, the amendment also comes in the wake of recent protests by Madhya Pradesh’s project affected persons struggle against the state government’s move to offer cash instead of land for the land they have lost because of the Sardar Sarovar Project. The idea of offering cash instead of land, floated by officials of the Gujarat government in an effort to expedite the project in mid-2000s, has led to huge corruption in payment to Madhya Pradesh oustees. Currently, the matter is under close scrutiny of the high court.
Menwhile, the NAPM said, the protest which began on September 2 by 1200 adivasis, by laying a siege of the office of the district collector, Nandurbar, Maharashtra, has been called off. The protest was against “illegal and unjust submergence due to Sardar Sarovar Project.” The protest ended after the district collector agreed to look into “impact of submergence, land-based rehabilitation, forest rights including common property rights, and also displacement due to seven medium projects, diversion of river water to the non adivasis families”, a separate NAPM statement, issued with Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA), said.
“On September 3, at 11pm, the Collector brought a letter to the hundreds of people on the sit-in and addressed the meeting assuring action on the issues, which were discussed with the NBA:, the statement said, claiming, the statement clearly exposes “the falsehood in the number of balance families yet to be rehabilitated. While Narmada Control Authority (NCA) report showed balance to be zero. The figure, prima-facie, calculated shows it to be above 1500 in Maharashtra.”
Under the agreement, “the details of land in Maharashtra and Gujarat for rehabilitation to be finalised and those will to be shared to the representatives of the oustees within next seven to 10 days. Various amenities – health, jetty, solar lamps - are to be provided to the villages on the Narmada Bank and rehabilitation sites, as per detailed decision taken. Enquiry into corruption discovered in NREGA, Rs two crore in eight villages and a few more crore in three other villages where social audit was conducted years back will lead to concrete action planned.”
The statement further said, it was agreed upon that “73 forest villages will become revenue and the process is expected to be completed by October first week. NBA has finished all documents, explaining the legal and illegal process on this, during last one a half decade. The medium projects, where Rs 20 crore, as opposed to, planned Rs 6 crore is to be spent on survey and plans itself, are challenged by the NBA. Those dams on the tributaries of Narmada, and as agreed by the Collector, can’t proceed unless the due democratic, consultative process is carried out, at the Gram Sabhas level.”

Comments

TRENDING

'Flawed' argument: Gandhi had minimal role, naval mutinies alone led to Independence

Counterview Desk Reacting to a Counterview  story , "Rewiring history? Bose, not Gandhi, was real Father of Nation: British PM Attlee 'cited'" (January 26, 2016), an avid reader has forwarded  reaction  in the form of a  link , which carries the article "Did Atlee say Gandhi had minimal role in Independence? #FactCheck", published in the site satyagrahis.in. The satyagraha.in article seeks to debunk the view, reported in the Counterview story, taken by retired army officer GD Bakshi in his book, “Bose: An Indian Samurai”, which claims that Gandhiji had a minimal role to play in India's freedom struggle, and that it was Netaji who played the crucial role. We reproduce the satyagraha.in article here. Text: Nowadays it is said by many MK Gandhi critics that Clement Atlee made a statement in which he said Gandhi has ‘minimal’ role in India's independence and gave credit to naval mutinies and with this statement, they concluded the whole freedom struggle.

A Hindu alternative to Valentine's Day? 'Shiv-Parvati was first love marriage in Universe'

By Rajiv Shah*   The other day, I was searching on Google a quote on Maha Shivratri which I wanted to send to someone, a confirmed Shiv Bhakt, quite close to me -- with an underlying message to act positively instead of being negative. On top of the search, I chanced upon an article in, imagine!, a Nashik Corporation site which offered me something very unusual. 

Don't agree on domestic subsidies, ensure food security at WTO meet: Farmer leaders

Counterview Desk  The Indian Coordination Committee of Farmers Movements (ICCFM), a top network of farmers’ organizations in India, in a letter to Piyush Goyal, Minister of Commerce and Industry, has asked him to “safeguard food security and sovereignty, even as ensuring peasants' rights" at the 13th Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organization (WTO MC 13), to take place from 26 to 29 February 2024 in Abu Dhabi.

Students, lawyers, professors detained in Delhi for demonstrating in support of farmers

By Our Representative  About 25 protestors, belonging to the civil rights network, Campaign Against State Repression (CASR), a coalition of over 40 organisations, were detained at Jantar Mantar for holding a demonstration in support of the farmers' stir on Friday. Those detained included students, lawyers and professors, including Prof Nandita Narain and Prof N Sachin. 

Sharp 61-85% fall in Tech startup funding in India's top 'business-friendly' States

By Rajiv Shah Funding in Tech startups in top business-friendly Indian states has witnessed a major fall, a data intelligence platform for private market research has said in a series of reports it has released this month. Analysing Tech startup data of Telangana, Maharashtra, Delhi NCR, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Kerala, Tracxn Technologies Ltd , the Bengaluru-based research firm, finds that except for Kerala, funding witnessed a fall of anywhere between 61% and 85%.

Solar energy funding dips 9% in 2023; 2024 'kicks off' with US$1 billion investment

By Lakshmitha Raj*  Solar energy tech companies have already secured slightly over US$1 billion in funding in 2024 (till Feb 7, 2024) after total funding into Solar Energy companies in India fell 9% to US$1.55B in 2023 from US$1.7B in 2022. A total of 39 $100M+ rounds have been closed till date, with Delhi leading the city-wise funding, followed by Gurugram and Mumbai.

Maize, bajra, jute, banana cultivation banned off West Bengal border: Plea to NHRC

Counterview Desk  West Bengal-based human rights defender Kirity Roy, who is secretary, Banglar Manabadhikar Suraksha Manch, and is national convenor of the Programme Against Custodial Torture & Impunity, in a representation to the chairman, National Human Rights Commission, second within few days, has bought to light one more case of trespassing and destruction of a fertile banana plantation by BSF personnel along the Indo-Bangladesh border, stating, despite a written complaint to the police has taken "no initiative".

India second best place to invest, next to UAE, yet there is 'lacks support' for IT services

By Sreevas Sahasranamam, Aileen Ionescu-Somers*  The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is the best place in the world to start a new business, according to the latest annual Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) survey. The Arab nation is number one for the third year in a row thanks to a big push by the government into cutting-edge technology in its efforts to diversify away from oil.

Buddhist shrines were 'massively destroyed' by Brahmanical rulers: Historian DN Jha

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

Mahanadi delta: Aggressive construction in flood plains, reduced fish stock, pollution

By Sudhansu R Das  Frequent natural calamities, unemployment, low farmers’ income, increase in crime rate and lack of quality human resources to strike a balance between growth and environment etc. continue to haunt the state. The state should delve into the root causes of poverty, unemployment and natural calamities.