Victory for United Movement Against Land Acquisition Bill, 2015

Narendra Modi Led BJP Government Forced Not To Re-Promulgate Ordinance

The united issue-based struggle built against the draconian land acquisition provisions sought to be imposed by the Narendra Modi-led BJP Government has emerged victorious. The All India Kisan Sabha congratulates the peasantry, the toiling masses and all dependents on land for this significant victory. It is for the first time in recent history that an elected Government with a single Party having majority in Parliament has been forced to retreat in the wake of united movement. The people have given a fitting rebuff to Prime Minister Modi’s authoritarian move to assist corporate profiteering and land grab at the cost of livelihood security and food security of millions.

It is worth recollecting that immediately after the Ordinance was promulgated for the first time AIKS along with hundreds of organisations of the peasantry, agricultural workers, Dalits, Adivasis, dependents on land and people’s movements responded in unison and burnt copies of the Ordinance on 30th January, 2015 in more than 300 Districts across the country. This was followed up with a massive Bhoo Adhikar Rally in Delhi on 24th February, a Convention of different Political Parties against the Land Acquisition Ordinance on 2nd April, 2015, State level Padayatras, mass rallies and a massive signature collection where after a house-to-house campaign teams collected lakhs of signatures across the country. Even bigger protests greeted the Government’s efforts to re-promulgate the Ordinance. The broad issue-based unity took concrete shape as the Bhoomi Adhikar Andolan sending out a loud and clear message that the struggle shall not be only against the draconian provisions of the Land Acquisition Ordinance but also for Land Rights and other demands of the peasantry. On 5th May there was yet another massive rally in Delhi against the Government proposals. All these concerted, consistent actions outside and opposition by the Left and other Parties in Parliament forced the Government to go in for a Joint Committee of the Parliament to look into the issue. All India Kisan Sabha and all constituents of the Bhoomi Adhikar Andolan deposed before the Committee countering the Government’s false claims point by point. Letters were sent to all Members of Parliament and also a Memorandum was submitted to the President. A Jan Sunvai/Public Hearing in which Members of Parliament and some members of the Joint Committee took part was another hallmark in this Movement.

The Government proposals would remove the requirement of seeking consent of dependents on land, conducting Social Impact Assessment, addressing food security concerns and protecting productive land. Millions could be evicted from Government land and on both sides of the expressways and rail up to 1 km of land could be taken over in addition to the huge tracts of land already being acquired. The BJP Government’s moves have been defeated at least for the time-being due to the united movement.

AIKS calls upon all units across the country to take out victory rallies and take the message of united struggle to the people. AIKS also feels that there is need for remaining vigilant and be prepared for further intensified struggles in the event of the Government making efforts to bring in such Legislation in future. The unity built at the National level will be further strengthened and expanded across the country to defeat any moves to bring draconian provisions for land acquisition at the State levels and fight for Land Rights.

 

Sd/-
Amra Ram Hannan Mollah
President General Secretary

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