Appeal for Solidarity
Khandadhar Surakhya Sangram Samiti
Khandadhar in Sundargarh district of Odisha has a waterfall of 244metres hight with green forest and rich biodiversity. This waterfall provides continuous water flow to river Brahmani. There are different communities of tribal including primitive tribal Paudi Bhuina who have community right as well as habitat right over this natural resources. It has also deposits of iron ores of high quality for which many corporate have lust for mining. Mean while the Govt. of Odisha have recommended to give the said mountain for mining to POSCO, a multinational company of South Korea against which the people of Dhinkia and Govindapur in Jagatsingpur have been agitating democratically since 2005.
The local tribals belonging to Khandadhar are also opposing mining and appealing the govt. to protect it. On 5th June 2014 World Environment Day, the newly formed Khandadhar Surakhya Sangram Samiti organized a mass programme at Khandadhar where the tribals and social activists took oath administered by the Chief of Paudi Bhuina tribal community Mr. Bilua Nayak in presence of Prafulla Samantara, President, Lok Shakti Abhiyan, Lingaraj, Leader of Farmers’ movement, Mr. Prafulla Majhi, MLA and CPI(M) leader Banamali Bhopal. In a mass rally all of them watched and gathered at village Budhabhuin. Along with Abhay Sahu, Leader of POSCO movement, all these leaders of People’s Movements addressed and announced their solidarity with Khandadhar Surakhya Sangram Samiti. A declaration by Sangram Samiti urged the Central and State Governments to ban mining in Khandadhar in the interest of tribals and protection and preservation of natural resources. Other wise a vibrant democratic people’s movement is in evitable.
It also appealed to all Political Parties, Social and People’s Organisations, intellectuals and environmental activities to extend support to this struggle to keep Khandadhar alive and protected for future generations. There were protests on behalf of different local organizations against mining for PSCO in last 8 years. I had participated in some of organized protest programmes. But this time the tribal people of different communities along with non-tribal from each villages of eight gram panchayats could participate as the KSSS could organize under local leadership. The KSSS taken birth on 25th march 2014 in the meeting of local communities where I proposed to go for mass protest on World Environment Day. As struggle began by local community leaders, rally I am happy to visualize a successful democratic people’s struggle to protect, preserve Khandadhar.
Let the people concerned to protect natural resources from looting by corporate monsters like POSCO extend their cooperation and solidarity to this struggle “ Save Khandadhar, Save Nature”
Lok Shakti Abhiyan
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