After forcing the Modi government to retreat on amendments to the land acquisition Act, Congress president Sonia Gandhi Sunday asked it to adopt the recommendations of a panel set up by the previous UPA government on socio-economic status of tribals. She also accused the government of planning to dilute tribal land rights.
The panel had recommended that non-tribal people or private entities should not be allowed to acquire tribal land and gram sabha consent should be made mandatory for acquisition of land, even by the government for its own use.
“There has been a considerable cut in budgetary allocations for healthcare and programmes for tribal development. The government’s plan to dilute environmental governance and tribal land rights is a serious threat to the welfare of Adivasis,” she said. She had earlier accused the government of trying to dilute the forest rights Act. “The government must adopt the recommendations of the Virginus Xaxa panel, set up by the UPA, without any further delay,” she said.