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All India Bandh: Tribal, Dalit Groups Protest Against SC's 13 Feb Eviction Order

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| March 5 , 2019 , 15:24 IST

Tribal and Dalit rights organizations had called for an All India Bandh on Tuesday protesting against the Supreme Court judgment of February 13 which ordered a forced eviction of more than 10 lakh tribes and forest dwellers across 16 states in India.

Though the court had put a stay on its order after the petition by the Centre, the tribal groups are of the opinion that it is a temporary relief in the absence of law and are demanding that the Centre bring in an ordinance to ensure their rights are protected.

 The apex court last week had ordered the concerned states to submit affidavits detailing the procedures which resulted in the rejection of claims by the Forest Dwelling Scheduled Tribes (FSDTs) along with the Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (OTFDs). The affected states have been directed to file their affidavits by July 10.

The Rashtriya Lok Samta party staged protests across Bihar in support of today's strike.

The National president of the SC/ST Wing of the Samajwadi Party Khemchand Koli, who is also present at the protest venue said, "SP not only extends its support but has decided to be physically present. Akhilesh Yadav ji had instructed us to join the protest in Delhi. We have people from Meerut, Baghpat and other areas including New Delhi."

Rajya Sabha MP and Delhi University Professor Manoj Jha in his address to the gathering said, "If the Centre does not bring about an ordinance in the 13 point roster, we will flood the streets. Remember the last words of Rohith Vemula - 'my life was a tragic accident' ".

Members of the Delhi University Teacher's Association (DUTA) along with students from several Universities have gathered at Delhi's Jantar Mantar to demand a reversal to the 200-point roster system.

Congress chief Rahul Gandhi extending his support to the protesters slammed the government for their "false promises". "Our tribal and Dalit brother and sisters are in crisis. The false promises of the Prime Minister have forced them to land on the roads today. Their forest and the right to life are constantly attacked. Withholding forest rights. From tampering in the constitutional reservation. I am complete with them," he tweeted.

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Prakash Ambedkar, national leader of Bharipa Bahujan Mahasangh hit out at the February 13 Supreme Court eviction order. "The Center should urgently appeal an appeal against the decision of the Supreme Court regarding tribal's forest land. Also, the Ordinance should be taken against the decision against the 13 Point Roster. Full support for today's India band" he wrote in a tweet.



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