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Governance is absent in the best governed state of India – Gujarat


Jameen Adhikar Andolan – Gujarat (JAAG)                     Khedut Samaj – Gujarat 
Khet Bhavan, Opp. Cargo Motors, Near Gandhi Ashram, Ahmedabad
24th October, 2015
The Government of Gujarat (GoG) has been conferred several awards by the Government of India (GoI) for “best governance”, “best e-governance”, transparency in its governance et al. the following case is illustrative. We will leave you to draw your conclusions.
1.            The farmers of Dholera SIR region have been agitating for the last 4 years against the SIR. 
2.           They have outstanding issues regarding clearance of their land records, which work has not happened since decades. 
3.            The then Collector of Ahmedabad district, Shri Roopwant Singh, at the Environmental Public Hearing (EPH) of DSIR held on 4th January 2014 had publicly assured the people that the pending work of clearing the land records would be undertaken at the earliest and no outstanding issues would be left pending. 
4.           Nothing on this score has happened between 4th January 2014 and now, a passage of 22 months. 
5.           The people of DSIR villages therefore resolved to walk from their villages to the Collectorate in Ahmedabad (in a footmarch) to remind the Collector of his unfulfilled promise. The footmarch is to happen between 29th of October and 3rd November 2015.
6.           Accordingly, permission for the rally was sought from the Police Commissioner, Ahmedabad and SP, Ahmedabad (Rural) on 14th October 2015. 
7.            On 16th October 2015 we came across a news report in the Bhavnagar edition of ‘Gujarat Samachar’ that section 144 was in operation in Ahmedabad (Rural). 
8.           On reading this news report we went to the Executive Magistrate’s office at Ahmedabad Collectorate to obtain the copy of the notification. We were told to inquire with the SP, (Rural) at Makarba on S. G. Highway since “we cannot give the copy of the notification”!!!! When asked if the notification would be available online, he replied: “No”. 
9.           On 24th October 2015, when we went to ask for a copy of the notification at the Police Commissioner’s office in Ahmedabad we were told to make a written request for the same. 
10.        Shocked, we nonetheless gave the same in writing. 
11.        “Now can we have the notification?”, we asked. “No, you will get it after the letter given at the registry reaches here via our registry branch”. 
12.        Meanwhile our letter seeking permission for the footmarch, submitted on 14th October 2015 (point no. 6), to the Registry Branch at the Police Commissioner’s office on the ground floor had not reached the Registry Branch on the 2nd floor even after 10 DAYS!!!
Evidently, the 6-lane expressways are more the need of the hour at the Police Commissioner’s office, the Collectorates, the Secretariat in Gujarat than elsewhere.
Khedut Samaj – Gujarat                                                           Jameen Adhikar Andolan – Gujarat (JAAG)

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