Skip to main content

Free flowing rivers as source of life, identity, culture of indigenous peoples of North-East

By Sanaton Laishram* 
The Affected Citizens of Teesta, Sikkim, Centre for Research and Advocacy, Manipur and the Borok Peoples Human Rights Organization, Tripura organized the North East India meet on Free Flowing Rivers, held at Gangtok, Sikkim from the 29th till the 30th November 2023.
The participants deliberated on the importance of free flowing Rivers as source of life, identity and culture of indigenous peoples in North East India. The participants also dwelled on the intrinsic survival and cultural relationship of indigenous peoples and their self-determined development over their rivers, forest and land.
The participants took serious note of the bursting of the 1200 MW Teesta III dam on 4 October 2023 that lead to massive disaster, loss of lives and destruction of properties and the continued unaccountability of the dam project authorities and Government. The participants called for decommission of the Teesta III dam and to stop building the proposed 520 MW Teesta IV Hydroelectric Project in Sikkim.
Mr. Gyatso Lepcha, Secretary, Affected Citizens of Teesta, Sikkim shared the free flow of our Rivers are obstructed by the construction of large dams, viz, 1200 MW Teesta III Dam, 510 MW Teesta V dam, 2000 MW Lower Subansiri dam, 105 MW Loktak Hydroelectric Project, Mapithel dam, Dumbur dam etc in North East. Large dams are also falsely projected as clean, green and renewable energy source to mitigate climate change.
Mr. Jiten Yumnam, Centre for Research and Advocacy expressed that Dam building worsened climate change and also affected by climate change, like Teesta III bursting in Sikkim. Rapid climate change, melting of Himalayan glaciers, glacial lake outburst, landslides has increased the disaster potential in North East India.
The participants resolved that the Government should ensure the free and unhindered flow of all Rivers in Sikkim and across North East India. Recognize the rights of River to flow free. The resolutions continued that the Government should stop building large dams in North East India due to fragile biodiversity, high seismicity, increased disaster, climate change and myriad social and environment impacts.
The Government should stop the classification and pursuance of large hydroelectric project as green, clean, renewable energy and climate friendly solutions. Stop plans to 3097 MW Etalin dam in Arunachal Pradesh, 190 MW Pabram Dam in Manipur etc in North East India. No more dams in Sikkim and Himalayan region.
The Government should the non-feasibility of building dams in the Himalayas in North East India due to impact of climate change, such as Glacial Lake Outburst, landslides, earthquake. International Financial Institutions, viz, World Bank, Asian Development Bank and other bilateral donors, should stop financing large dams and related infrastructures across North East India.
The participants also resolved that the Government should promote sustainable and just energy solution and feasible alternatives in close consultation and rightful participation of all communities across North East India. Ensure rightful participation of all communities in all development decision making affecting their rivers, land, forest, lives and future. Frame Mountain and Rivers Protection policies rooted in recognition of community rights.
---
*President, Centre For Research And Advocacy, Manipur

Comments

TRENDING

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. 

'Anti-poor stand': Even British wouldn't reduce Railways' sleeper and general coaches

By Anandi Pandey, Sandeep Pandey*  Probably even the British, who introduced railways in India, would not have done what the Bhartiya Janata Party government is doing. The number of Sleeper and General class coaches in various trains are surreptitiously and ominously disappearing accompanied by a simultaneous increase in Air Conditioned coaches. In the characteristic style of BJP government there was no discussion or debate on this move by the Indian Railways either in the Parliament or outside of it. 

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

How embracing diversity enriched my life, brought profound sense of joy

By Mike Ghouse*  If you can shed the bias towards others, you'll love the connections with every human that God or his systems have created. This gives a sense of freedom and brings meaning and joy to life. Embracing and respecting how people dress, eat, and practice their beliefs becomes an enriching experience.

Banned Maoist party protests in Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, claims support across globe

By Harsh Thakor*  Despite being a banned and designated as terrorist organisation under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act since 2009, the Communist Party of India (Maoist) is said to have successfully implemented a one-day bandh across Kolhan division in Jharkhand on July 10th, with repurcussions in the neighbouring Chhattisgarh. The bandh was called to protest against alleged police brutality in the Kolhan-Saranda region.

'28% rise in sedition cases': Top global NGO alliance rates India's civil space 'repressed'

By Rajiv Shah Rating India's civic space as repressed , Civicus, a global civil society alliance, in its new report submitted to the UN Human Rights Committee (UNHRC) on the state of civic space in the country has said that the use of sedition law against the Modi government’s critics continues. "Under the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, sedition cases have increased by 28 per cent with over 500 cases against more than 7,000 people", it says.

Post-poll mob lynching spree, bulldozer justice: NAPM seeks united resistance

Counterview Desk  Condemning what it calls "the horrific spree of mob lynchings across the country after the Lok Sabha election results", India's premier civil society network, National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM), has called for "united resistance" against "hateful communal politics, mob lynching of religious minorities and caste-based oppression".

Why convert growing badminton popularity into an 'inclusive sports opportunity'

By Sudhansu R Das  Over the years badminton has become the second most popular game in the world after soccer.  Today, nearly 220 million people across the world play badminton.  The game has become very popular in urban India after India won medals in various international badminton tournaments.  One will come across a badminton court in every one kilometer radius of Hyderabad.  

Ayurveda, Sidda, and knowledge: Three-day workshop begins in Pala town

By Rosamma Thomas*  Pala town in Kottayam district of Kerala is about 25 km from the district headquarters. St Thomas College in Pala is currently hosting a three-day workshop on knowledge systems, and gathered together are philosophers, sociologists, medical practitioners in homeopathy and Ayurveda, one of them from Nepal, and a few guests from Europe. The discussions on the first day focused on knowledge systems, power structures, and epistemic diversity. French researcher Jacquiline Descarpentries, who represents a unique cooperative of researchers, some of whom have no formal institutional affiliation, laid the ground, addressing the audience over the Internet.