Gadichirowli, Nagpur and Bandara. Yatra Reports Days 86, 87 & 88

26th December, Gadichirowli

The yatra team met with a group from Congress Seva Dal and Akhil Bharathi Banjara Seva Sangh.

They spoke to us about the problem of nomadic tribes. The Dr. Balakrishna Renke commission identified more than 1600 groups in the country as nomadic groups. More than 95% of these groups do not have individual or community rights over land. The Ministry of Social justice is responsible for these groups but no social security has been created  for these groups. There is neither education nor health facilities for children, nor are there schemes for housing. The minimum land-holding act proposed by the Dr. BK committee will give a special status to nomads.

27th December – Nagpur

Avaasiya Haq Parishad and Samajwadi Jan Praishad organized a meeting with activists of Nagpur.

We learned that more than 8 lakh people live in 640 slums of Nagpur city. Partial regularization of almost 70% of slums is done and 30% of the slums are even now considered illegal. The Maharashtra government is trying to implement vertical rehabilitation so that surplus land can be used for real-estate purposes.

More 300 villages in a 25km radius have been included in the city expansion project and hence the number of slums is constantly increasing. 325 crores is allotted for Urban expansion and urban development but not even 10% of this is used for providing basic amenities in slums.

Arif Mohammad  Khan ji, a senior politicians said that the government is bending over to accommodate the interest of the rich and powerful. Hence, non-violent struggles like Jansatyagraha which brings together urban poor and rural poor become all the more important.

December 28th – Bandara district,

We next travelled to the India Sagar Dam project affected area. A public hearing was organized in Gram Palini. Gosikhurd Sangharsh Samiti leader Shri Someshwar said: In 1982 Indira Sagar Dam’s foundation was laid.  As per the original project, 2.5 lakh ha agricultural land will be irrigated. 200 villages will be submerged because of this dam. Land Acquisition began in 1990 and compensation of 10,000-20,000 was set. 34 villages of Bandara  and 52 villages of Nagpur district will be completely submerged but the villages that have been completely lost have not yet been compensated and rehabilitated. More than 80% of those displaced have not be compensated.

This dam was joint venture between the centre and the state. The hidden objective was that water was being secured for power generation and industrialization. The farmers who have not been compensated, should be compensated today at 5 lakhs per acre. After 20 years of continuous struggle and submitting petitions to PM, CM, MPs, MLAs, there has not dignified rehabilitation package so far.

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