FROM OUR CORRESPONDENT
ITAGAR, Sept 10: The Rakap Sanglum Village Development Committee (RSVDC) has pleaded Chief Minister Pema Khandu to revoke and reconsider the eviction order issued against the Rakap Sanglum villagers living at Pachin Colony, harlagun.
The government recently issued an eviction order against the people residing in the area as the state government plans to establish a medical college there.
RSVDC Chairman Tadar Tash informed that representatives of the state government along with some students leaders in the year 1999 has approached the aforesaid village asking the villagers to dote land for establishment of 500 bedded referral hospital to which the villagers has accepted to dote their land.
"In return of land, the conditions put forward by the villager were that the state government was to provide regular jobs of C & D grade, petty contract works and plot of land with trading license within the Capital Complex to the land affected families. However, the state government instead of fulfilling its promises has served an eviction notice," lamented Tash.
"We are land donors but the state government now has termed us as encroachers", he added.
Stating that whatever the state government paid in the form of compensation to 72 families out of 207 families till date cannot be considered as land compensation rather it was only a compensation for clearance of forest, agriculture and fishponds, Tash further informed that former chief minister late Kalikho Pul, on April 1 this year during his visit to the village had assured to compensate the entire 207 families along with its earlier demands.
"The former chief minister had even assured to provide job opportunities in the technical department of the Arun Medicity cum Medical College if the land affected families had qualified persons," asserted Tadar adding that Pul had also assured rehabilitation of the land affected families. "Late Pul had also assured us 20 acres of land out of 200 acres for our rehabilitation which the present state government is not ready to look into," stated Tadung Yangfo, general secretary of RSVDC.
Adding that for rehabilitation and resettlement of villagers, ADM cum Chief Estate Officer Talo Potom had also surveyed the area, Yangfo appealed the state government to take all the assurances given by the previous governments into consideration before taking any major steps.
"We are land donors, not land encroachers against whom the state government has ordered an eviction drive. We have been cooperating with the state government since the day they came to us asking for our land. We will maintain the same but the government also has to live up to its promises of compensation, job and rehabilitation," claimed Yangfo.
Informing that most of the villagers of the area depend on agriculture, horticulture and fisheries for their living, the committee further appealed the state government to provide regular jobs to those farmers' family on compensation ground before rehabilitating them so that their life is hampered.
Meanwhile, when contacted ADM Taloh Potom over the imbroglio, he interestingly informed that as for now the eviction drive has been put on hold as a new obstacle has come into picture.
As per Potom, the entire stretch of land actually falls under the jurisdiction of Durpang Forest Reserve hence neither the villagers nor the state government can carry out any activities till the time the area is not de-notified by the forest department.