By TwoCircles.net Staff Reporter,
Sidhi, MP: While most of the people bid adieu to the bygone year and welcomed the New Year with lavish parties, hundreds of Dalits and Adivasis decided to make a new beginning on the first day of the year by launching Bhoomi Adhikar Yatra, a campaign for land rights in Madhya Pradesh under the banner of National Confederation of Dalit Organizations (NACDOR) with the slogan of ‘Marching for Land for Livelihood and Dignity’.
On January 1, 2014, hundreds of Dalit, Adivasi women and men gathered under their respective banner of Rashtriya Dalit Mahasabha and Adivasi Adhikar Andolan at Ambedkar Chowk at the district headquarter of District Sidhi in Madhya Pradesh to jointly launched their Bhoomi Adhikar Yatra (Land Right March).
They demanded 5 acres land for each landless Dalit, Adivasi and poor and land titles to those who possess lands but never given titles.
The 120 day long Bhoomi Adhikar Yatra, which began on bicycles, will cover more than a thousand villages in 20 districts of Madhya Pradesh before its convergence in Bhoomi Adhikar Sammelan on 9th June in Bhopal, the capital of the Madhya Pradesh.
Ashok Bharti, chairman of NACDOR said while speaking to TCN on the occasion, “Only 3% land belongs to SC/STs while their population is 36%. The motive behind this yatra is to get the attention of the government and the policy makers sitting in the Centre and make them aware of this very need of the hour.”
In India, close to 70% of its population is dependent on land and agriculture for their livelihood, dignity and food security. India, close to 70% of its population is dependent on land and agriculture for their livelihood, dignity and food security. Out of 137.76 milions of operational land holding in the country, Madhya Pradesh has 8.87 million ha lands, of which only 0.45 million ha is owned by Schedule Caste/Schedule Tribe.