KOKRAJHAR: Bodoland Janajati Suraksha Mancha (BJSM) on Wednesday questioned whether the Gauhati High Court order to evict all illegal non-tribal encroachers in tribal belts and blocks across the State would be followed by Principal Secretaries and Deputy Commissioners of respective districts and if council leaders under 6th schedule would obey the order.
Encroachment in Bodoland Territorial Region
Observing the massive encroachment in BTC region by non-qualified people in tribal belts and blocks, the president of BJSM, Janaklal Basumatary said that if BTC Chief Executive Member (CEM) Pramod Boro and other responsible officers disobeyed the High Court order, they would face contempt of court. He said that they had no power to disrespect the provision of chapter-X of Assam Land and Land Revenue Regulation (ALLRA), 1886 as amended in 1947.
"This High Court order is not only for BTC but for the whole State of Assam. There is specific order for BTC also making responsible its Principal Secretary to implement the provision of the chapter-X of the ALLRR, 1886 as amended in 1947. The BTC chief or even Chief Minister of Assam cannot disobey this law of the land. This is law for protection of tribal land right," he said, adding that the illegal encroachers were prohibited to acquire land in the notified protected tribal area by transfer, lease, exchange, agreement and settlement from the date of the notification of the tribal belts and blocks under above Land Revenue Regulation of Assam as amended in 1947.
Basumatary said that the chief of BTC could not disobey this law of the land but had to carry out the eviction action against the identified illegal encroachers. "He cannot issue land patta to these encroachers. Rather the government is to recover the encroached land by eviction and distribute it to landless tribal people. This is the tribal land protection already provided in the existing law," said Basumatary.
The BJSM leader said the BTC chief Promod Boro had to provide land to tribal people even in reserved forest village under Forest Dwellers' Act, 2006. He has to evict all unqualified class of persons occupying the reserved forest land under Forest Act and Forest Dweller Act, 2006, including the encroachers of reserved village grazing field and allot such evicted land to the landless tribal people as per Supreme Court Order in 2011 covering the State of Assam also in an environment protection case.
The tribal leader said the government had already identified such encroachers in this area, including BTC area, and as such it was overdue for eviction work in this area. He said that the BTC chief could not ignore this Supreme Court order and deprive the tribal people benefit from this SC order. He said that the sixth schedule administration was meant for tribal protection administration under the Constitution of India and the duty and responsibility of the chief of BTC was to protect and preserve it, not to violate it.