Reach out to tribal people who lost lands, livelihood due to construction of NH-516E, demands CPI(M)

Reach out to tribal people who lost lands, livelihood due to construction of NH-516E, demands CPI(M)

CPI(M) State Secretary V. Srinivasa Rao.

CPI(M) State Secretary V. Srinivasa Rao.
| Photo Credit: File Photo

The CPI(M) has asked Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy to reach out to the tribal people who have lost their lands and livelihood due to the laying of the National Highway-516E.

In a letter on Sunday, CPI(M) State secretary V. Srinivasa Rao told the Chief Minister that the State government had accorded permission for the NH project between Vizianagaram and Rajahmundry, and the contractors could complete 30% of the works at Anantagiri, Araku, Dumbriguda, Hukumpet, Paderu, G. Madugula, G.K. Veedhi, Koyyuru and Rajavommangi in Alluri Sitharama Raju district.

About 50 acres, including ‘jirayiti’ and forest podu lands, on either side of the highway were destroyed in the process, he said. “Podu lands are the main source of livelihood for the tribes. Coffee plantations, paddy and turmeric crops are cultivated by about 1,500 tribal families. The coffee plantations are being removed at will,” the CPI(M) leader said in the letter.

Mr. Srinivasa Rao alleged that officials had not adhered to the land acquisition norms too. The opinion of the Panchayat Extension of Scheduled Areas (PESA) too was not sought, he said.

“It is the responsibility of the government to provide rights over the land to the tribal people who have been living there since long. The contractors have destroyed the water pipelines and temples as well,” he said.

He urged the Chief Minister to initiate action against the officials concerned for suppressing the tribal rights, ensure that a grama sabha was conducted, and announce compensation to the affected people as per the Land Acquisition Act, 2013.

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