Badwani | June 09, 2017: The statement issued and published today by the Deputy Chief Minister of Gujarat, Mr. Nitin Patel, followed the totally undemocratic and unexpected arrest and attack on the children participating in the peaceful rally of Sardar Sarovar oustees with supporters from across the country, on the border of MP and Gujrat (on 7th June 2017). One may say, it is either to be totally ignored or blasted. However, it is an indicator of Gujarat‘s plan with the support from the centre, getting ready with its statutory force, to stop and supress people’s power. The same state, on the other hand, seems to be expressing its cowardice by raising a false alarm that NBA is out to create a stir in Gujarat since they are opposed to Sardar Sarovar and Gujarat’s development!
This is absolutely a hyper-reaction to the movement of the organised oustees, the adivasis from Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh and other farmer and labourers’ communities in Madhya Pradesh. A deliberately misleading statement clearly brings out as to how much of respect Gujarat has for those who sacrifice for any development project including Sardar Sarovar. While Gujarat oustees have been on a relay fast and Dharna (sit in) since last one year, the government of Gujarat has still not responded positively, except making promises, unfulfilled.
There are a few hundred adivasi families still living in the original villages of Gujarat, hundreds are those whose land allotted decades ago is under threat to be taken back for no genuine reason and large number of resettled oustees suffering due to lack of amenities including water, at the resettlement sites. Gujarat has no doubt resettled almost 10000 families during last 30 years when the struggle was on. Yet this government is scared to let any outside activist or even a petitioner at the Supreme Court tries to assess the ground reality in the villages on the river bank, now to face huge watery grave but still not rehabilitated and those others who are to be evicted for Garudeshwar Weir Project, tourism, infrastructure, the Sardar Patel statue and what not, all in the name of development. Gujarat government cannot blame them for fighting for their rights. Nor can it blame NBA for supporting them and questioning bad, illegal impacts of the official plans and demand equitable and sustainable development with just rehabilitation.
The deputy Chief Minister of Gujarat very well knows that his government has been filing false affidavits before the court showing best and complete rehabilitation being achieved. It therefore does not wish to let the truth under the carpet, to be out. It was due to fear in their minds which was that Gujarat oustees who feel cheated would meet the participants from all over the country, raise issues and narrate their stories. Deputy CM must realise that the oustees before from Madhya Pradesh, numbering more than 40000 whose houses, farms, trees and forest, sources of livelihood, centuries old religious sites are being submerged; have the right to get together and express their demands. It was an absolutely anti-constitutional move by Gujarat Police and government, detaining and arresting senior activists including Dr.Sunilam, Prafulla Samantara, comrade Jaswinder Singh, Ashok Patel, Hasmukh Patel, Advocate Aradhna Bhargava, Taru Lata, Madhuresh Kumar, Suniti SR, Medha Patkar and many young students as well as villagers who hailed from various states including Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, has taken the message far and wide. They were not even permitted to pass a few kilometres through Gujarat for attending a meeting planned at village Chimalkhedi, Maharashtra, one of the Sardar Sarovar Project affected hilly adivasi village.
The students from Salsabeel Green School, Thrissur, 4 of who were minors, were dragged out of the government jeep and beaten up, fracturing one of the kid’s arm, trying to force them to get down at a barren place, near Nanpur, district Alirajpur, MP.
The Gujarat government is known for its distorted propaganda since years, they seem to be at it again since they wish to close the gates of the dam pushing it illegally. All the judgements of the apex court including the latest one of 08.02.2017 have endorsed peoples’ right to rehabilitation as a part of right to life. The fact is that Gujarat’s own people cannot be easily mesmerised without the details. The huge sea ingress due to Sardar Sarovar and the farmer’s struggle against water diversion to the corporates is a reality now.
We wish to assert our right to freedom of movement across the country. It is just fear that led the Deputy CM to give such a statement, because peoples’ movement had gained its ground and their false claims were going to be unmasked especially by the oustees of Gujarat. They, therefore, arrested Jiku bhai Tadvi and Balu bhai Tadvi along with Lakhan bhai, a Sarvodayi Activist, a supporter of the oustees and others from Gujarat from their houses with 50 others. Lakhan bhai is still in jail, who has been refused to give bail. The police administration that is SP and ASP of district Chhota Udaipur, had informed us of a notification issued on the 5th of June or before, preventing the activists from entering Gujarat. They could not show though, the copy of the same in spite of repeated demands. About 700 of Gujarat’s own Sardar Sarovar oustees were stopped on every route to Kevadiya Colony, near the dam, where a peaceful agitation by them has been on for the last 11 months. All this was no doubt to hide the Gujarat’s balance in rehabilitation works against their affidavits before the apex court.
The politics and games towards the upcoming election in Gujarat and to close the gates of Sardar Sarovar and fill waters up to 138.68 meters, drowning lakhs of people has commenced.
Bhagirath Dhangar, Suresh Pradhan, Kailash Awasya
for more details, contact:
Madhuresh Kumar: 9818905316
Government and police officials crackdown on children, young activists and women participants of Rally for the Valley
New Delhi | June 08, 2017: Rally for the Valley organized by Narmada Bachao Andolan starting from June 05, 2017, the world environment day to June 07, 2017 to expose the illegal submergence and forced eviction planned by Madhya Pradesh government in the upcoming month of July, 2017 without providing the complete and just rehabilitation to the people of Narmada Valley. Hundreds of supporters from all the country, students from Tata Institute of Social Sciences, JNU, IIT, Hyderabad Central University, Jamia Milia Islamia, Shivaji Vidyapeeth, Azim Premji University, Delhi University and thousands of people of Narmada Valley were took part in the rally for three days.
Apart from well known social activist Medha Patkar prominent social activists, and leaders namely, Goldman Environmental Prize 2017 Winner Prafulla Samantara, Jasvinder Singh Kaur of Akhil Bhartiya Kisan Sabha, Gandhian activist Nita Mahadev from Gujarat Lok Samiti, Bhupendra Singh Rawat from Jan Sangharsh Vahini, Dr. Sunilam, Rajendra Ravi, Nanhu Prasad, Suniti SR, Madhuresh Kumar of NAPM, Aradhana Bhargava from Kisan Sangharsh Samiti were also participated in the rally. The rally started from Khalghat and travelled to Dharampuri, Semalda, Chhota Barda, Pipri, Nisarpur, Koteshwar.
On 7th June, 2017, the rally reached up to Gujarat Border from where it was going to Chimalkhedi Jeevanshala to meet the students and for a public meeting. But all this could not happen as Gujarat Police illegally stopped the rally at Relgha checkpost yesterday and detained all the leaders along with more than 150 people peacefully participating in the rally.
The police officials did not show any written orders when asked, why the protestors are being stopped from entering the border of an Indian State? The police officials could only respond to the question that the order came from higher authorities about which they could not show any written order. The protestors remained there and peacefully protesting against the illegal curfew raj of Gujarat Govt. and against the denial of fundamental constitutional rights. Later the police turned violent and detained all of the protestors, dragged women protestors, beaten up two children Kaamil and Hasim of Salsabeel Green School studying in 9th and 8th standard, among them Kaamil left injured with a possible fracture in his shoulder. Police also tried to run over their vehicle on two of the protestor, Aswathy and Rohit, young activists with NBA. Their legs left injured and because of police brutal attempt, Rohit left with fracture in his leg, which needs to be confirmed yet and Aswathy left with bruises on her calf muscle.
Gujarat police also attempted to separate Medha Patkar from other protestors and left remaining in the middle of nowhere. In the late evening they illegally taken all of them into Madhya Pradesh border and left all of them at Nanpur police station, Kukshi district, where some of the injured people got their MLC done. Police officials at Nanpur police station denied filing the FIR against Gujarat Police officials. After which Narmada Bachao Andolan filed a detailed complaint against illegal detention and police atrocities on the children, young activists and women members of the rally. Later in the hospital, the doctor came drunk after one hour of long wait in the night and slapped Rohit without any reason, also dragged other injured people in the process.
Narmada Bachao Andolan filed a detailed complaint with Nanpur police station and condemns the brutal and unconstitutional attack carried out by Gujarat Police. After killing of farmers in Mandsaur, it was another black day for the Indian constitution and judiciary of this country. The state is fiercely attacking the dissenting voices and violently trying to crush whatever comes in their way. For forcefully evicting the people from Narmada Valley, Madhya Pradesh Govt. has been planning to deploy more than 40,000 police forces in the next month.
In another incident, Lakhan Musafir of Paryavaran Suraksha Samiti, a member of National Alliance of People’s Movements, illegally detained for last three days by Gujarat Police. The police didn’t produce him before the magistrate within 24 hours and kept him at an unknown place. We condemn the police actions happening against the rule of law and the constitution of this country. Gujarat Govt. shamelessly violating the fundamental rights of people of the state and the country.
National Alliance of People’s Movements along with Narmada Bachao Andolan equivocally condemns the dangerous, unconstitutional, violent attack by Gujarat police and State govt. on participants of Rally for the Valley, and Lakhan Musafir, an activist with Paryavaran Suraksha Samiti. The movement will continue against the forceful and unlawful eviction planned by Madhya Pradesh in Narmada Valley. People of Narmada Valley also taken resolve to stand high and strong non-violently against all the Govt.’s violent attack on the people of Narmada Valley. We demands,
1) Immediate release Lakhan Musafir of Paryavaran Suraksha Samiti, illegally detained by Gujarat Police.
2) Immediately file an FIR against Gujarat Police based on the detailed complaint registered at Nanpur Police Station, Alirajpur, Madhya Pradesh.
3) Immediately suspend and take strict actions against the Doctor called to do the MLC in Prathamik Swasthya Kendra. He was drunk on the duty and harassed the injured.
For further details please contact 9818905316, 9867348307, 9179617513