March 11, 2012, Kunchbihar
The first stop of the day was Gitalda region of Kunchbihar district, where a meeting was organised by Gitaldha Gram Vikas Samiti and Simant Krishak Sangh (Marginal farmer committee).The group visited village Brahma Paista North on Indo-Bangladesh border after the meeting. The main problem of this village is flooding from Ghaar river. Mr. Subhanali shared that village Daribas, colony Bhorbanda, Davnesh, Jhardeal, Daribasa, Brahma, Paista north and Brahma Paista South comes under Gitaldha Panchayat where about 15000 small and marginal farmers are cultivating land. 4 years ago, Brahma Paista North village was on the other side of the river. About 200 families lost their land and have relocated/shifted to this village. Due to the floods, they can grow crop in winters only. The main crop of the area is rice, maize and tobacco. Mr, Vijay Paasi, Gram Panchayat Gialdha shared that they have submitted application to district and state administration to build a dam on the river so that excess water can be used for agriculture that would allow the farmers to grow two crops instead. He hoped that the Jan Satyagraha would help in taking their message to the state and Govt. of India so that farmers and marginal labourers in the bordering areas would get justice and honour.