The Gujarat High Court has dismissed a 2019 Public Interest Litigation that had sought the protection of livelihoods of tribals from five villages of Narmada district near the Statue of Unity at Kevadia colony.
Activists Mahesh Pandya, Anand Mazgaonkar, Ashok Naik and Jatin Sheth filed the PIL in 2019. They represented the villagers and tribals from the villages of Kevadia, Vagadia, Navagam, Limdi, and Gora. The PIL had contended that while the state government acquired the land parcels in the five villages as long back as 1960, 1961 and 1962, the villagers continued to be in possession of the land and cultivate there. Citing Section 24 (2) of the act, it was submitted that if an acquired land remains unoccupied for five years, the acquisition gets canceled.
In response to this petition, the High Court observed that this could not be treated as a case of a PIL as individual rights over the land had to be established. The court dismissed the petition stating that every resident of these villages must file individual claim over the land and said that the PIL filed on behalf of a total of 1800 persons (295 families) cannot be sanctioned. The individual has to establish that compensation was not paid to them and that they continued to be in possession of the land.
“Such rights are individual rights attached to each of the present residents who are claiming possession. Thus also, the petition on behalf of such 1,800 persons (295 families) cannot be entertained as a Public Interest Litigation,” observed the judgment. It also noted that third parties can not represent individual claims. “Such claimants would have to establish and pass both the tests of compensation not being paid to them and also that they are continuing in possession,” it added.
MLA ChotuBhai Vasva shared videos of the tensions that arose when the Police came soon after the judgment to try and strong-arm the tribals into giving up the land.
#coronavirus के वक़्त #Lokdown मे बीजेपी सरकार ने पुलिसकर्मियों को साथ रखके #केवड़िया के आदिवासी ओकी जमीन लूटने की जो शुरुआत की हैदेश/राज्य का कोंन सा मीडिया इसपर आवाज उठाता है या नही ओर ब्रेकिंग न्यूज में दिखाता है या नही वो भी गुजरात की जनता देखे क्या अब सरकार चाहती है कि लोग सरकार की तरह लोक डाउन को भूलकर सड़को पर आंदोलन करने निकले ?ABP Asmita TV9 Gujarati News18 Gujarati BBC News Gujarati VTV Gujarati News and Beyond Ahmedabad Mirror
Posted by Chhotubhai A Vasava on Sunday, May 10, 2020
आशा है मीडिया देश की जनता को ये सच दिखाएगा यह गुजरात केवडिया से आया आज का विडियो है#कोरोना महामारी के इस वक्त #भाजपा…
Posted by Chhotubhai A Vasava on Saturday, May 9, 2020
He says in his Facebook post- I hope that the media shows this to the people. This video has come from Kevadia, Gujarat. During the Corona Pandemic, what is #BJP government doing is for the whole country to see. In the name of #statueOfUnity, this government wants to destroy the constitution and end the history and identity of Adivasis. #Coronavirus pandemic is just an excuse, in reality, during the corona scare, the government want to loot the adivasi land.
#statueofunity is #statueofdisplacement
Also Read: Turning back the clock: How the state is reversing gains made by traditional forest-dwelling communities