Skip to main content

Provide physical possession of land to Dalits, Adivasis by May 1, or face Gujarat-wide agitation: Chief minister told

Martin Macwan addressing the meet
By Our Representative
Babubhai, who belongs to Rinjha village of Dholka taluka of Ahmedabad district, has been taking rounds of the district collector’s office, situated about 100 kilometres away, for the last 11 years. He has been pleading with the government authorities to ensure that the 22 families get the physical possession of the land, allocated to them only on paper decades ago.
Same was the case of hundreds of men and women, who had come all the way from the rural areas of about 42 talukas of 12 Gujarat districts, including Nirubhai Chorasiya of Bhavnagar district, Mohanbhai Parmar of Sabarkantha district, Maheshbhai Rathod of Surendranagar district, and Vadodara district’s Rameshbhai Vasava, all of whom related their take of woes.
They had come to the Dalit Shakti Kendra (DSK) campus, Nani Devti village, Sanand taluka, about 20 km west of Ahmedabad city, to deliberate on land rights issues they have been facing for decades, but with no solution in sight.
Participants in the meet agreed that in 50% of cases, atrocities are committed because of disputes arising out of agricultural land allocated on paper to the Dalits during the land reforms days, even though they have still not been able to get its physical possession.
“While Dalits and Adivasis have to wait for decades to get the actual possession of the land, there is delay on the part of government authorities in acquiring and handing land over land to industrialists without any hassle”, Dalit rights leader Martin Macwan, founder, Navsaran Trust, told the meet.
The meet finalized a resolution for submission to the Gujarat chief minister, which called upon the Gujarat government to concretize a policy for physically handing over land to Dalits and Adivasis. “Local authorities refuse to vacate encroachments upon the land which legally belongs to Dalits or Adivasis”, it claimed.
“Government resolutions on handing over land to Dalits and Adivasis are not implemented. False affidavits, like the one by the Surendranagar district collector, are made before the Gujarat High Court regarding allocation of land to Dalits, and despite the mistakes being pointed out on the basis of satellite imagery, no corrective steps are taken”, he said.
Addressing the meet, former BJP MLA Siddharth Parmar, a Dalit leader, called upon all the Dalit rights leaders to come together. “If there is unity, nobody can deny Dalits their right to land”, he said.
“The situation has reached the point where Dalits and Adivasis have been turned into beggars to get the physical possession of the land which is actually theirs. This is one of the major reasons why Bhanubhai Vankar was forced to commit suicide by setting himself on fire in front of the Patan district office”, the resolution said.
The resolution -- a copy of which was handed over by 127 Dalit rights leaders led by Macwan and Parmar to mark the 127th birth anniversary of Dr BR Ambedkar, India’s Dalit icon, to the deputy collector, Sanand -- insisted that the Gujarat government should ensure that the legal provision of handing over land to Dalits and Adivasis are “not violated” till Dalits and Adivasis get the physical possession of their land.
Other demands included setting up of special courts to look into land-related atrocity cases against Dalits and Adivasis, setting up of special offices focused on settling their land rights issues, solving issues that have arisen because of the resurvey of lands to be allocated to them, and so on.
The resolution said, no one should take the extreme step of setting oneself on fire out of frustration because of the failure to get the legal right to land, adding, the fight for land would be held within the constitutional framework. It warned the government that if fails to move towards solving the land rights issues of Dalits and Adivasis by May 1, the activists would kick start protests in different districts of Gujarat.

Comments

Uma said…
CM is awaiting instructions from PM who is busy with weightier matters like CHOGM

TRENDING

Nirma varsity demand for higher fees 'illegal', violates Article 14: Letter to Gujarat HC

Counterview Desk
Students of Gujarat’s top private institute, Nirma University, situated in the outskirts of Ahmedabad, in a letter to the Chief Justice the state High Court, have complained that the authorities are demanding “full fees” from students, without taking into account the “disproportionate impact” the lockdown has on the livelihood of students and families.

Buddhist shrines massively destroyed by Brahmanical rulers in "pre-Islamic" era: Historian DN Jha's survey

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".

Vulnerable to Covid-19, sharp rise in murder of Indian journalists during pandemic

By Nava Thakuria*
Vulnerability of working journalists in India is no way an alien issue as the populous country loses a number of working journalists to assailants as also medical emergencies. Even though there was only one casualty in the Indian media fraternity during the first half of 2020, who was targeted for journalistic work, India has begun witnessing an alarming number of media casualties during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Govt 'assures' Gujarat HC no action against MBBS students defying corona sahayak order

By Our Representative
The Gujarat government has assured the High Court that no action would be taken against Part-I and Part-II MBBS students of the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC)-controlled NHL Medical College and LG Hospital and Medical College. The assurance follows the direction by Justice SH Vora to the State government not to prosecute or initiate action against the students who were defying the college authorities’ order to work as corona sahayaks (helpers).

Ex-official: Murmu, appointed as CAG, will 'surely' perform shradh of the institution

Counterview Desk
A former senior official of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG), Shantanu Basu, in a Facebook comment in the wake of the appointment of GC Murmu, a Gujarat IAS cadre official of the 1985, has raised doubts about the independence of CAG following the Government of India move.

Renounced US citizenship to serve workers, tribals, Sudha Bharadwaj 'odiously' in jail

By Atul, Sandeep Pandey*
Professor Sudha Bharadwaj has been in jail since August 2018. She was taken into police custody on August 26, 2018 on suspicion of being involved in Maoist terror activities after Republic TV claimed that she had allegedly written a letter to Maoists and was conspiring to create public disorder and unrest in India.

Undoing 'past wrong' at Ayodhya: Will Modi govt hand over Puri temple to Buddhists?

By Shamsul Islam*
While laying the foundation of Ram Janmabhoomi Temple at Ayodhya on August 5, 2020, with the get-up of a prosperous Hindu sage, Prime Minister Narendra Modi declared that wait of Hindus of the world for centuries was over, as Lord Ram’s birthplace has been finally liberated from numerous attempts to destroy it.

Plant organic, eat fresh: Emlen Bage's journey from migrant labour to agri-entrepreneur

By Chandrashekar and Kriti*
Who is a farmer? Type this question in the google search and check out the images? You can see men thronging the screen. This is the popular perception around the globe. Well one can understand how difficult it would be for a woman to defy this perception.

High youth unemployment: India 'fails' to take advantage of demographic dividend

By Varun Kumar
As coronavirus pandemic continues amplifying challenges among youth with regard to employment opportunities, government policies have further resulted in economic slowdown, leading to mass unemployment and loss jobs. According to the International Labour Organisation report “Covid-19 and the World of Work” (May 27, 2020), around 94 percent of the world’s workers are living in countries with some sort of workplace closure measures in place.