Blog Archives

ALRD and partners raise voices to protect Adivasi community from land grab

ALRD_ALRD’s network partner, Kapeeng Foundation, held a Press Conference on 19 June, 2013 in cooperation with ALRD in Dhaka Bangladesh to share a fact finding report with media personnel prepared by 14-member Citizens’ Committee who had visited the area following incidences of land grabbing including violation of human rights at Adivashi Chak and Mro community of Naikkhanchhari and Lama Upazilla under Bandjarban district in Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT). About 21 Chak family Community are reported to have been evicted with repeated death threat from their ancestral lands as the influential grabbers had taken hold of their property. The report also says that another 210 Mro Jhum family are on the process of eviction. However, the grabbing process is known to have been creeping for the last four years following an illegal lease of land handed over to the vested interest quarters.

The civic delegation comprising country’s senior politician Mr. Pankaj Bhattacharya, president of United National Awami Party, Columnist Syed Abul Maksud, Professor Dr. Nur Mohammad Talukder, President of College-University Teachers’ Association, NGO Director Mr. Noman Ahmmed Khan, Professor Rajib Mir of Jagannath University, Mr. Dipayon Khisha of Capeeng Foundation, Mr. Mongol Chakma of Jana Sanghati Samity , and Journalist Mr. Arun Bikash were, among other, the fact finding team members spoke in the press conference. They placed 6-point demands urging the government to ensure security of the victims and safe return to their lands and that the perpetrators be arrested immediately. The demand also includes: arrest the land grabbers and miscreants; re-settle/rehabilitate the victim families (Adivasi Chak and Mro) on the evicted land through cancelation of leased agreement; in any leasing of land in CHT must be done with the informed consent of the adivasi; and to provide 5 acres of land each of the victim families.

The speakers viewed the incidence as a clear violation of human rights. They emphasized reformation of government policy in dealing with indigenous issues. It was also alleged that influential politician used to take possession of lands in Bandarban hill district and the local administration does not step to stop the land grabbing. They cautioned that the situation in CHT might again become volatile because of a sense of insecurity of its people who are continuously losing their land due to non-implementation of the CHT peace accord signed between Bangladesh Government and Jana Samhati Samity (JSS) in 1997.

Later on, ALRD’s Executive Committee member Raja Devasish Roy, while drawing attention to this issues to the Prime Minister’s Advisor on Public Affairs Mr. H T Imam, he (Mr. Imam) expressed his deep concern over the issue and assured to look into this matter.

Advertisements

India confronts land grabs in industry push

Reuters

Posted: Thursday, Sep 16, 2010 at 0222 hrs IST
Updated: Thursday, Sep 16, 2010 at 0222 hrs IST

Source: The Financial Express

As India rapidly industrialises, the government and private firms are seeking large tracts of farm land to build factories, power plants and highways, sparking off violent protests by farmers and others. Here are some questions and answers on the issue:

WHY IS LAND A BIG ISSUE?

* For many Indians, land is the only asset or social security that they possess and is a mark of social standing. Nearly 60% of India’s 1.2 billion citizens depend on farming for a living and each hectare of farmland supports five people.

* Most projects require huge amounts of land. A proposed steel mill by South Korea’s Posco in Orissa will be built on 1,600 hectares. A six-lane highway between Agra and New Delhi will require 43,000 hectares.

* Compensation ranges from between $4,300 a hectare, in the case of top steelmaker ArcelorMittal’s proposed plant of over 4,400 hectares in Jharkhand, to $14,600 per hectare, offered to farmers displaced by Posco’s Orissa mill.

* Despite the seemingly attractive prices, farmers have few other livelihood options and land taken over for industrialisation has been blamed for displacing hundreds of thousands of people.

* Protests against land being taken over have become more visible as the economy expands and the rich-poor gap widens.

Read more at http://www.financialexpress.com/news/india-confronts-land-grabs-in-industry-push/682116/.

Cambodian rights group says tax breaks leading to forced evictions

Monday, August 16, 2010
Radio Australia News

A land rights organisation in Cambodia says EU tax breaks meant to promote trade with poor nations are contributing to evictions at gunpoint in rural areas.

The EU tax-free status of exports from Cambodia to the EU is one of the key factors that’s revived Cambodia’s sugar industry, after years of war and instability.

But land concessions granted by the Cambodian Government to companies have led to forced evictions involving armed police and soldiers.

At least two people have been shot during these evictions, and David Pred, the Cambodia country director of Bridges Across Borders, has told Radio Australia’s Connect Asia program there are many reports of assaults, arbitary arrests and threats. (To read full article, click here)

Oil Palm Firm Faces Action On Land Rights

Courtesy of Sabah News Times

new-saba-times

Kota Kinabalu: The Land and Survey Department will take legal action against a company for encroaching into customary rights land in Kota Marudu.

Its director Datuk Osman Jamal said the department inspected the area on July 23 and found that the company had encroached on the villagers’ customary rights land to develop its oil palm plantation .

According to him, 88 individuals applied for 1,760 acres of land in the area, and approval was given by the state government via a letter (MNR114/22/1110/16) dated June 2, 1978.

And following that, 22 land titles were issued.

“We understand that the company was given the Power of Attorney by the said land owners to develop the area for oil palm.

“But during an inspection in July, we discovered that the company was also clearing the area outside the 1,760 acres to plant oil palm,” Osman said.

He assured that the department would take appropriate action in accordance with the Land Ordinance.

Read more: Oil Palm Firm Faces Action on Land Rights

Philippine Sumilao farmers appeal for global support for return of their land

Walk for Land, Walk for Justice

PANAW Sumilao MPC

San Vicente, Sumilao, Bukidnon

Contact no: +63-908-8849590

Position Paper on the Delayed Distribution of the 144-Hectare Land to Sumilao Farmers

We the Sumilao Farmers walked for more than 1,700 kilometers from Sumilao, Bukidnon to Manila, which started on October 10, 2007 and reached Malacanang on December 18, 2007. We demanded for the return of our 144-hectare ancestral land in Sumilao, Bukidnon.

On March 29, 2008, a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) was signed between the Sumilao Farmers, San Miguel Corporation (SMC), Office of the President, Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) and the Church, thereby giving back the 144-hectare land to us. The next day, we occupied and tilled the 50-hectare land which is part of the 144-hectare contested land. The remaining 94 hectares will be immediately acquired outside the San Miguel Foods Incorporated (SMFI) property. Read the rest of this entry

Use land for food crops urged Tamil Nadu officials

Jan.25, 2010

source: The Hindu Online Edition, January 25, 2010

Tamil Nadu Horticulture Department officials should ensure that land used to promote various crops should not diminish land allocated for growing food, said C.V. Sairam, senior scientist, Zonal Project Directorate, Indian Council for Agriculture Research, Bangalore.

In an article featured in The Hindu Online Edition last January 25, Mr. Sairam told the Department officers, “In the interest of society, [they] should not use land under food crops for promoting any other crops, as food crop production is on the decline.”

Mr. Sairam disclosed this at the one-day master training programme on Technological Options in Production, Post Harvest Management and Marketing of Aromatic Crops conducted by the MYRADA Krishi Vigyan Kendra last January 22.

“I understand that other crops should also be promoted and that Horticulture Department officials have targets to meet, which can be easily achieved by working in coordination with other departments.”

Mr. Sairam also asked the officers to ensure that farmers get a good price for their produce, as they “win on farms but lose out in markets.” Read the rest of this entry