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Unlawful construction of ash pond for power plant in Raigarh

 

Amnesty International India

The construction of an ash pond for a thermal power plant in Nawapara Tenda village, Raigarh, Chhattisgarh without informing or consulting local Adivasi villagers violates their right to free, prior and informed consent, said Amnesty International India today.

nawapara tenda

TRN Energy, a subsidiary of ACB (India) Power Limited, operates a 600 MW coal-fired thermal power plant in the region. Local residents told Amnesty international India that on 15 October 2017, about 15 people claiming to be acting on behalf of TRN Energy started the construction of an ash pond in Nawapara Tenda, using four excavators and five trucks. Several villagers said that they had not been informed or consulted about the construction of the ash pond, or been told about the effects it could have on their rights to clean air, water, health and livelihood.

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The human rights lies of Coal India Limited

 

Dr. B. Karthik Navayan

In August, Coal India Limited – the world's largest coal miner – published a 'sustainability report' for 2016-17, as part of its compliance with reporting guidelines set up by the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), an independent international organization. GRI's stated aim is to help businesses understand and communicate their impact on issues including human rights.

coal adivasi

The 'human rights' section of Coal India's report proudly notes that the company respects human rights in its relations with its employees, suppliers, contractors and vendors. It states that Coal India's business partners comply fully with laws on minimum wages, contract labour and child labour. The clincher is the line: During the year 2016-17, we don't have any reported case of human rights violation." And it's not just this year – Coal India's sustainability reports for 2015-16 and 2014-15 also feature the same line: "We don't have any reported case of human rights violation".

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70 years old Dalit woman beaten up and threatened to kill by dominant caste men

 

Deepak Kumar & Rajeshwar

Names of the Victims: Maggidi Buchhamma, 70 years, and her daughter Maggidi Manga. 

Dominant Caste Culprits: Baltha Rajamouli and his son and Allam Ravi. 

When: 23rd July 2017, Sunday, morning.

Where: Rendlaguda (Mandapally), Jannaram Mandal, Mancherial District, Telangana. 

Why: Maggidi Buchamma and her daughter Maggidi Manga went to the house of Baltha Rajamouli on 23rd July 2017 morning to ask the return of their land documents, for which they were duped and cheated.

maggidi-buchamma2

Background: Maggidi Buchamma was gifted 3 Guntas of land by her son-in-law Late Bade Lingaiah in early 2006, who owns 50 Guntas of land in Survey No 29 of Vempally, Kothapally Shivar near Mancherial Town. In October 2006, the elder daughter of Buchamma committed suicide. Three days after her daugher's suicide, being from the same village, Baltha Rajamouli, a dominant caste man, approached Buchamma and told her that she will get money as compensation for the death of her daughter and took her in his car to Mancherial town.

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Amnesty International: Scheduled Tribes Panel Order on Unlawful Land Transfers is Welcome

 

Amnesty International India

 Statement released by Amnesty International India

Bangalore
11 May 2017

A recent order by the National Commission for Scheduled Tribes to the District Magistrate in Raigarh, Chhattisgarh directing action in cases of unlawful transfer of Adivasi land is a positive move, said Amnesty International India today.

On 9 May, the National Commission for Scheduled Tribes (NCST) directed action to be taken under the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act – a special law to protect the rights of Dalit and Adivasi people – in cases where Adivasi land was transferred to other people through forgery. The order follows recent allegations that over 300 acres (121 hectares) of Adivasi land had been unlawfully transferred to non-Adivasis in Kunkuni village, Raigarh between 2009 and 2015. A farmer named Jailal Rathiya who had filed a petition in the Chhattisgarh High Court in relation to the transfer was found dead in March 2017.

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Fact Finding Report on Police Excesses in Nadukuppam Village, Marina Beach

 

[Via Trevor Jeyaraj]

Fact Finding Mission to Enquire into Alleged Police Excesses on 23rd January 2017 in Nadukuppam Village, Marina Beach, Tamil Nadu

 January 25, 2017

"நாங்க காலம்காலமா இந்த குப்பத்திலே இருக்கோம். நாங்க இன்னிக்கி திடீர்ன்னு பயங்கரவாதிகளா ஆயிட்டோமா? அடிபட்டு, ரத்தம் சிந்த ஓடிவந்த கொழந்தைங்க, அவங்க பயங்கரவாதிங்களா? அவங்களும் எங்கள மாதிரி தமிழங்கதானே? எங்க கொழந்தைங்க மாதிரிதானே? தமிழனுக்குத் தமிழன்தானே ஆதரவு தரனும்? அவங்கள காப்பாத்துறது எங்க கடமை இல்லையா? அதுக்கா எங்கள இப்படி அடிச்சு நோறுக்குனாங்க?"

"We have been living in these Fishing hamlet for ages, Have we become Terrorists, out of the blue? The kids who have run to us, bleeding, after being hit, were they terrorists? Aren't they Tamilans like us? Aren't they like our Children? It is a Tamilan who should stand by a fellow Tamilan, is it not? Is it not our duty to protect them? Have they beaten us to pulp like this, for all this?" ~ Woman resident, Nadukuppam, as told to Dr. V. Vasanthi Devi.

cff 1

An all-women fact-finding team consisting of Dr. V. Vasanthi Devi, former chair State Commission on Women, Prof. Anandhi Shanmugasundaram, Adv. Poongkhulali Balasubramanian, and Chandrika Ramanujam from Thozilalar Koodam visited Nadukuppam between 2 and 5 p.m. on 24 January to file the following fact-finding report. Considering the urgency of the situation and the threat of destruction of valuable evidence at Nadukuppam, the Fact finding team has decided to release this report immediately. This report maybe further updated to include versions of other affected individuals and the police personnel.

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The Long Exit: Conferences of the Depressed Classes During the 1930s

 

Gerard Baared

babasaheb reading1

[The long exit from Hinduism/Brahmanism for the 'untouchables' is naturally an ongoing movement, given the scale of the task, the multiple levels of responsibilities to understand, process and communicate people's aspirations regarding their rights, and the complex logistic factors to be dealt with.

The term exit predicates an imagined or real inclusion, but the 'untouchables' were never included in Hinduism/Brahmanism. Hence this exit is basically an exit from the manufactured 'included discourse' of the state-aided dominant castes' political strategies.

The 1930s were marked by several major conferences and meetings led by Dr Ambedkar and other leaders from Depressed Classes deliberating on the complete rejection of Hinduism for the emancipation of their communities. This unique history of a marginalized community's engagement with issues of individual and collective rights guaranteed or denied in different religions, produces one of the most intellectually complex discourse. To document these debates which examined the social, political, economic and spiritual possibilities for 'untouchable' communities that are spread across different languages and regions, we have to splice together narratives from many sources.

 The following is an excerpt from the paper titled, The Depressed Classes of India: Their Struggle for Emancipation, by Gerard Baared published in 1937. This section details the churning and the organized activities by the leaders of Depressed Classes as they pursued the exit from Hinduism and systematically evaluated the alternatives.~ Round Table India]

 ~~

At long last, on the 10 May 1935, the Poona Pact with the Government Amendment was adopted in the Commons by 152 votes to 35. It is indeed, as the Depressed Classes President Rao Bahadur M.C. Rajah called it, the "Magna Carta of the Depressed Classes community."

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Judicial Discourse and Caste Violence

 

Aditya

Reading Bathani Tola and Laxmanpur Bathe Judgment* 

aditya 1“Everyone strives to attain the law...how does it come about, then, that in all these years no one has come seeking admittance but me?....The doorkeeper replies.......

No one but you could gain admittance through this door, since this door was intended only for you. I am now going to shut it.”[1]

The situation in which people of Bathani Tola and Laxmanpur Bathe are is much like the situation of the man who received this reply from the doorkeeper. Acquittal of all the accused and rejection of every witnesses account led to massive critique from the academic, activist, victims and survivor’s side of the judgment. The following paper is an attempt to sift through this situation of legal justice that was named as normalising injustice in legal way by many. The paper is an attempt to understand the judgment to reflect on judicial discourse emerging from the judgments in Bathani Tola and Laxmanpur Bathe. The discourse is set out in relation with citizenship and constitutionalism, with special emphasis on working of courts. The paper is divided in three sections. The first section shall attempt to unravel and make clear the relation between citizenship, marginalised communities (Dalits and Muslims), constitution and courts. This will be followed by brief explanation of judicial discourse and the discourse which appears in the judgments on Bathani Tola and Laxmanpur bathe. The final section shall attempt to explore the judgment and develop a critique based on caste with a brief input from constitutionalism. This shall strive to understand essences of caste, and its manifestation in instances of Narsamhar and Judgment. 

 Unintended Making Base for the Intended: Clarifying the Course of Action

This paper does not intend to provide a critique of state. It is more about engaging with the state in Bihar that is contextualized[2] in case of caste violence in central region of Bihar. It is further narrowed down to two judgments on cases of caste violence, that is, Bathani Tola and Laxmanpur (Lakshmanpur) Bathe[3]. The question then emerges is; can we not by engaging in this manner are capable of providing a critique of the State.

Second, it is not aimed at providing an adamant critique of the judgment as unjust[4]. It is an attempt to understand Judicial Discourse in general and in particular via these two judgments. It is about understanding how judiciary makes sense of violence. Why does it has such an understanding and what is left out in this understanding? It is more about asking why judgment came in this particular form, not in the form that we all had expected. The question that perhaps emerges is that can we not in this manner provide a critique of the judgment?

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