New Delhi : The Modi Government has once again proven that it is indeed anti-farmer-labourer and pro-corporates by promulgating the land ordinance 2015 on the eve of 3rd April. Turning a complete blind eye to the nation-wide fierce opposition to the ordinance, neither did the government hold any dialogue with people’s movements and affected farmers / labourers groups nor did it pay any attention to the political parties that have opposed this draconian ordinance. With the single-minded agenda of kneeling before the corporates while crores of our citizens are exploited, displaced, disposed and deprived, this government has shown that it simply does not care for the poor and toiling people, for our land, agriculture and nature.
The 2015 ordinance has once again removed important clauses of seeking consent for private projects and from land owners for PPP projects. It has also removed the much required Social Impact Assessment, mandated by the 2013 Act, showing its lack of seriousness to understand the impact of development projects on the lives of the people and affected groups. Rather than addressing the needs of poor and widespread landlessness, the Modi government is using the mandate for taking the country forward to circumvent all parliamentary procedures and is hell bent on misusing its powers only to ensure private profits, putting the lives of millions of citizens at risk, in the name of development.
However, we the people’s movements, workers unions, farmer organizations and concerned citizens of this country will not allow this government to take this undemocratic and anti-people move and will intensify our opposition in every nook and corner of the country. We want to remind Mr. Modi that it is not merely about the “perception”, but about lives, livelihoods of our people and agriculture and nature of this country!
The protest against the land ordinance has intensified all over the country with several people’s movements, trade unions, farmers and labourer organisations under the banner of Bhoomi Adhikaar Andolan burning copies of this ordinance across villages, blocks, district and state headquarters in Sonbhadra, Lakhimpur Kheri, Chitrakoot, Jaunpur, Saharanpur, Gonda, Lucknow and Allahabad (Uttar Pradesh) on 5th -6th April. Protests and ordinance burning were also organised in Rewa, Chhindwara, Panna, Yawal, Gwalior, Singrauli (Madhya Pradesh); Bhusawal, Jalgaon, Yawal, Chopra, Avalner, Faizpur, Nandurban, Taloda, Akkalkua (Maharashtra); and at Tapi, Songarh, Sagbara, Nijjar, and Dediyapada (Gujarat) and in Narmada Valley. The ordinance was also burnt widely in West Bengal, Tripura, Bhubaneswar, Jaipur etc. It was also burnt yesterday in Haryana and will be done in Himachal Pradesh on 7th April.
Demands for withdrawal of the ordinance and for land rights will continue in every nook and corner of the country with planned State-Level Conventions, Mass Mobilisation, Padayatras, Rail Roko, Rasta Roko and Human Chains in states like Chhattisgarh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh, Telengana, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Tamil Nadu in the upcoming weeks.
In solidarity with protests by people across the country against this anti-democratic and anti-people ordinance, various groups gathered at Jantar Mantar burnt copies of the ordinance to mark their protest. They demanded immediate stopping of the loot of natural resource and recognise the constitutional commitment to people’s rights over land, water and forests and resources. Vandana Shiva, N D Pancholi, Com. Sunit Chopra, Kavita Krishnan, Anil Choudhary, Rajneesh Gambhir, Rajendra Ravi, Vijoo Krishnan, Amit Bhatnagar addressed the gathering.
All India Kisan Sabha (36 Canning Lane), All India Kisan Sabha (Ajay Bhavan), National Alliance of People’s Movement, All India Union for Forest Working People, Kisan Sangharsh Samiti, INSAF, All India Agricultural Workers’ Union (36, Canning Lane), Bharatiya Khet Mazdoor Union (Ajay Bhavan), All India Krishak Khet Mazdoor Sanghatan, Bharatiya Kisan Union (Harpal Singh), Chhattisgarh Bachao Andolan, Ghar Banao Ghar Bachao Andolan, Kanjhwal Bhumi Bachao Andolan, Socialist Centre, Mahan Sangharsh Samiti, Lok Sangharsh Morcha, Nimka Thana Bhumi Adhigrahan Virodh Manch, Lokadhikar, Adharshila Learning Centre, Madhya Pradesh, Delhi Solidarity Group, Uttarakhand Mahila Manch, Yuva Kranti, Sarvahara Jan Andolan And many other Organisations
Bhumi Adhikaar Andolan is a coalition of peoples’ movements, farmers and peasant organisations and trade unions