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AN ESSENTIAL GUIDE ON THE UTILIZATION OF THE GODAVARI WATERS AND RESOURCES


 The RoFR act recognizes the dwelling site, religious places, burial grounds, village council sites along with places of MFP, water resources, biodiverisity etc and also PVT tenures. As the implementation boils down to title deeds for house sites and lands under cultivation, SAKTI engaged the Chenchu youth to document their traditional knowledge in their idiom and dialect, in encouraging them to assert as inborn foresters, capable of managing these resources as envisaged in the Act.


"Since SAKTI activities are mostly issue based and covering a large area, here we concentrate on the forest-related programmes of SAKTI for the present study."


  

The Tribal Struggle for Property Rights

-Arun Kumar


SAKTI: Review Report by: Mukta Srivastava, Programme Officer, Oxfam GB in India - Hyderabad . DATE : 20-25 November 2002

 


RECONSTRUCTING A HISTORY OF LAND,

DISPOSSESSION OF ADIVASI LAND IN THE WEST GODAVARI DISTRICT OF A.P.

Bhukya Bhangya

Asst. Professor of History

Nizam College,

Osmania University,

Hyderabad

Read full article


 

 

DISTRICT COLLECTOR REPORT TO GOVERNMENT

- July 1996

 

he main reasons for the disputes between tribals and non-tribals in Agency area are categorised as follows:

1. The tribals are claiming the lands classified orginally at the time of survey and Settlement in the year 1932 as A.W.D. in the Settlement Register, which are in occupation of Non-tribals on the ground that the Non-tribals are not eligible for assignment in Agency area in government villages from the year 1917.
2. The lands covered by transaction took place between Non-tribals after enactment of Regulation 1/70 should not be restored to original vendors but they should be distributed to eligible tribals as the transactions took place between one non-tribal and other Non-tribal are null and void as per Regulation 1/70.


3. The lands classified as A.W.D. in village Accounts in taken over Estate Villages should be assigned to the Tribals only by evicting non-tribals from those lands.

***

"It was decided to post an independent Settlement officer to finalise the pending settlement cases within six months: (Action: Rev.Department)"

- The minutes of the Chief Minister’s meeting on 6-8-1996 at 2.30 P.M.

 

Tribal, non-tribal ties worsen

- By C.Lokeswar Rao
- Newstime-Hyderabad, 8th August, 1996

 

Hyderabad: Gutting of the mandal revenue office (M.R.O) at Jangareddygudem by non-tribal farmers and an attack by tribals in Busarajupalli on a local leader, K.Rambabu, indicate that the administration in West Godavari district is hoist with a grave situation in the agency areas like Jangareddygudem, Jeelugumilli, Busarajupalli, Buttaigudem on a Polavaram where skirmishes have been fought over the last 16 months between tribals and non-tribals over the primordial issue of land.

Sporadic violence has been raging in the tribal areas of West Godavari even though police have been deployed in strength over the last two months and armed police were rushed to the area in recent weeks.

A raid on Manugopula village by non-tribal farmers which left ten people injured and several houses destroyed and the confinement of a party of non-tribals which included women for five hours at Darbhagudem by tribals until police rescued the non-tribals sometime in the middle of the night are among the other major incidents reported in recent weeks. The police deployed after these incidents were apparently ineffective while non-tribals were attacked at Busarajupalli and when MRO's office, the depository of land records which are at crux of the war of attrition over the last 16 months was gutted.

Direct Action:

Tribals armed with bows and arrows have been resorting to "direct action" in preventing non-tribals from entering the fields which they have been cultivating for several years to press demand for identifying and evicting people holding land in agency area in violation of Regulation one of 1970 which is meant to prevent alienation of tribal land. Non-tribal farmers affected by the agitation by Koya tribals, who include many small and marginal farmers and some Dalits who had been given assignment pattas in tribal villages, have been resorting to 'rasta-roko' campaigns to bring pressure on the state government. Women have been in the forefront of the war for survival in both camps. While Koya women are lining up with bows and arrows to prevent non-tribals from entering the fields for sowing or harvesting, women from non-tribal families are taking the initiative in rasta-roko campaigns. Though they can muster vehicles like tractors, non-tribals are at a disadvantage as most of them do not live in the tribal hamlets where they have been cultivating land. Some non-tribals from Darbhagudem who set out to harvest paddy from their fields in Panduvarigudem and Seemalavarigudem were surrounded by armed tribals and were confined till they were rescued by a police party around midnight. Mango and cashew apples worth about Rs.one crore were picked by tribals from the 600-acre estate of the Hukampet Zamindar this summer and 49 tribals were arrested in connection with the incident recently. The fact that the arrests took place more than two month after the incident only served to aggravate tensions. 



Ambivalence, Not Apathy:

Shockingly it is a case of ambivalence, not apathy. The administration has been aware of socio-economic-cultural dimensions of the war being fought in the tribal tract of West Godavari since the summer of 1995.

Thanks to the efforts of Sakthi, a voluntary agency which has been collecting and disseminating information on land records, tribals woke up to the fact that non-tribals seemed to hold most of the uplands (termed assessed waste dry in revenue jargon) which bore rich crops of cotton, chillies and tobacco. It is not that all the non-tribals farming land in agency areas were assigned pattas by bending rules. Many of them had bought land cheap from other, non-tribals who anticipated the day tribals would assert their rights under Regulation one of 1970 and sold off their holdings. Since land in non-tribal areas costs about Rs.1.5 lakh an acre and even annual lease to a cotton farmer fetches Rs.8,000 or so, The buyers thought they were securing a bargain paying about Rs.20,000 for an acre of land.

The major dimensions of the problem are that 70 per cent of the people in agency areas, who are non-tribals, may lose land since Regulation one of 1970 makes no exception. About 1,400 acres of land may have to be handed over by non-tribals under land transfer regulation.

Due process fails to deliver:

The administration has been aware of the problem but has been proceeding at a snail's pace with key measures like identifying people who encroached land, evicting encroachers and distributing land among tribals. The present conflict was ignited last year when tribals felt that the "due process" of government did not deliver justice.

A man holding 29 acres of land was identified as an encroacher and evicted but the land could not be secured for distribution to tribals. After a campaign of hunger strikes and dharnas a Section 145 order was passed restraining both parties from entering the disputed fields. Later, the same sub-collector who passed eviction orders passed an order that while the non-tribals in possession had violated Regulation one of 1970, they could continue in possession until appropriate procedure for restoring tribal land is completed. (Newstime October 19, 1995)

This exercise in ambivalence is being played out, over and over again. Sakthi is being allowed access to information. Land records are being read out a village meetings (the complaint by Girijans of Busarajupalli was that only banjar list was read out and the list of pattas was not called out). The MROs who read out records never took action on the basis of history of ownership. All the time tribals are subjected to pep talks about peace and asked to give assurance that they would wait "till due process is completed." And senior officials do not seem to be interested in questions such as the number of land holders who are descendants of patta holders or the result of an LTR enquiry.

Administration's Modest Achievements:

Considering that Skirmishes have been fought for 16 months, atleast 1,400 acres has to be taken over for distribution and loss of agricultural production due to standstill caused by confrontation runs into crores (cashew and mango 'looted' in one incident were estimated to be worth Rs.one crore), the tangible achievements of the administration are exasperatingly modest. While 95 per cent patta lands have changed hands, government has looked into only five per cent cases under Land Transfer Regulation (LTR) and there have been no enquiries into encroachments. In isolated instances, the Collector got 24 acres of land distributed in Jillellagudem and a joint collector visited Lankalapalli and had notices served to non-tribals of Jilugumilli to report history of land ownership. The Tribals who picked cashew from groves of non-tribals in Barrinkalapadu, Lankalapalli and Panduvarigudem were incensed by the fact that possession of 27 acres of land supposedly distributed in Vankavarigudem was delayed. Though a monitoring cell was formed after these incidents, all that was achieved was that 47 acres was taken over for distribution in Manugopula and 24 acres in Kamayyapalem, incidentally a village free of disputes.

Tracing Records:

Tribals are now demanding that records of 1902, 1932 and 1995 be read out together to trace the process of alienation of land, making public the history of ownership, supply of Photostat copies of land records, guidance on process of filing complaints, a separate cell in collector's office functioning under collector's supervision and a time-bound schedule for identifying and evicting encroachers and for distributing land. Why should it take ages since there are only some 200 survey numbers in tribal villages, is the question. 

 

 

   

 

W.P. No. 5515/87 M.P.No.7398/87 Date:May 1987

W.P. No. 6175/87 M.P.No.8273/87 Date:May 1987

 "Managing Director Godavari plywoods ltd. Rampachodavaram E.G.Dt. be and hereby is directed not to cut any mango trees, jamun and jack trees and cutting the forests of Maredumilli mandal, E.G.Dt."

 Only matured or dying trees were to be felled. Jeelugu (Caryota urens) palm, trees yielding minor forest produce like tamarind or cane brakes, creepers were not to be touched. A gap of 20 meters from a stream.)         --Times of India, April 30, 1991.

 

The candidate has chosen a topical subject, very relevant to our thinking on culture, cognition and language. He has red widely and is familiar with the literature that matters. His linguistic and anthropological reasoning is sound. His language is clear and simple.

...evidence of the investigator's ability as a linguist by special training and as a linguistic anthropologist by self - cultivated interest.

Prof. A.Munirathnam Reddy, Head, Department of Social Anthropology,S.V.University, Tirupati - 517502

 

Enabling the Community to Gain Command Over the Administrative Process is Empowerment.

 

"Today the development is manaement without governance and governanace is without proper participation."

 

 

A.P.Cabinet Sub - Committee Report on Left Wing Extrremists. - P.Sivaramakrishna.

The only information the government or media always compile carefully is on Naxalite encounters, never the violations of the instruments of rule of law such as minimum wages, fifth schedule, mismanagement of forests, equity in the distribution of welfare benefits, displacement, fragmentation of Socio-economic entities etc. 

        

INDIRA SAGAR (POLAVARAM) CENTRAL EMPOWERED COMMITTEE ORDER

if the R & R is found to be lagging with reference to the fixed bench marks, the construction should accordingly be deferred / stopped;

FORESTS ARE RESERVOIRS OF WATER AND LUNGS OF OUR ENVIRONMENTS.

SAVE THEM FROM MINING AND DESTRUCTION.

Click here to Bauxite Case: Read full article.