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Thursday, September 23, 2021

International Tribal Day: Mamata demands Central law to protect Adivasi land rights

‘95% of Jhargram tribal population has received benefits from state schemes’

By: Express News Service | Kolkata |
August 10, 2021 6:25:16 am
CM Mamata Banerjee at a programme to mark International Tribal Day in Jhargram on Monday. (Source: CMO)

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday asked the Centre to immediately enact a law to protect the land rights of Adivasis by disallowing the transfer of their land to non-tribal communities. The Trinamool Congress (TMC) chairperson claimed such protections exist in Bengal.

Banerjee raised the demand for a central law during her visit to Jhargram district, where she attended an International Tribal Day programme. The TMC chief also matched steps with local women performing an Adivasi dance. Banerjee also wore traditional tribal attire over her saree, and played the dhamsa (a traditional percussion instrument).

“The rights of the tribals have to be protected. We have taken all steps for the development of the tribal communities of our state. Nearly 95 per cent of the tribal population in Jhargram has received benefits from state government schemes. We have also created a separate department for the welfare of tribals and to ensure their land rights are protected. Tribal land cannot be transferred in Bengal. A law to protect the land rights of tribals across the country should be passed by the Centre,” Banerjee said at the event.

Thanking the people of Jhargram for supporting her party in the last Assembly elections, the TMC chief said, “I want to thank all of you for your blessings. If we have committed any mistake, we will rectify it.”

She added, “We have built super-speciality hospitals, colleges, and universities in the region. Our government has officially recognised the Alchiki language. The ‘Duare Sarkar [government at doorsteps]’ project has also been a huge hit in this area. Through ‘Duare Sarkar’, we have reached out to more than three crore people. Beneficiaries of the ‘Lakhi Bhandar’ scheme, which aims to provide basic income support to the female heads of the family, will start receiving the dole from September 1.”

Though the BJP swept the Jangalmahal region, of which Jhargram is a part, in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, the TMC managed to rebuild its organisation in the area overcome the fault and won 29 of 40 Assembly seats in the area in this year’s state elections.

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