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Mystery shrouds halt to eviction

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  29 Aug 2017 12:00 AM GMT

Amchang Wildlife Sanctuary

By our Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, Aug 28: The sudden halt to the eviction drive in Amchang Wildlife Sanctuary looks like a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma.

It was on Friday last when the administrations, equipped with an eviction order from the Gauhati High Court, dismantled around 283 houses amidst a commotion with the encroachers. On that day itself, the Gauhati High Court had to stay the eviction drive at Yusuf gar by issuing an interim order. The HC asked the State Government to maintain status quo only at Yusuf gar, not in rest of the sanctuary.

Dispur then asked its officials to go ahead with the drive in areas in the sanctuary other than Yusuf gar on Saturday. However, all of a sudden, Dispur decided to put on hold the eviction drive for two days, i.e. on Saturday and Sunday. The Kamrup (M) DC was on record saying that the eviction drive would begin from Monday morning. However, surprisingly the drive has been suspended indefinitely.

In the meantime, the Gauhati High Court vacated its interim order that had stayed the eviction drive at Yusuf gar. With this development, the administrations now can carry on its drive at Yusuf gar like other areas in the Sanctuary.

While forest lands at Yusuf gar have been encroached upon by people belonging to a minority community, other areas in the sanctuary have been encroached upon by tribal people hailing from Majuli, Dhemaji, Dhakuakha, Gogamukh etc. What has even hazed the mystery more is an allegation that a number of officials of the State Government have also encroached upon land in the wildlife sanctuary.

When asked for her comments on the sudden halt to the eviction drive, State Forest and Environment Minister Pramila Rani Brahma said: “We’ve decided to let the situation calm. The situation was tense during the eviction drive in the sanctuary on Friday last. It’s difficult to go ahead with an eviction drive when the situation is tense. I appeal to all those who’ve encroached upon lands in the Sanctuary to vacate the lands on their own. If the encroachers are landless and indigenous people of the State, certainly the government will do something to rehabilitate them elsewhere in the State.”

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