RANCHI: Tribal leaders from across the state announced to protest any move by the state government to amend the Chotanagpur Tenancy (CNT) Act and deprive tribal people of their rights.
The tribal leaders present at the mahapanchayat organized by the CNT Act Suraksha Samiti here on Sunday took vows not to hesitate to launch massive agitation in case the government changes the provision of the act which prevents transfer of land of people from reserved category to those of general category.
Sensing the resentment among hundreds of tribals at the mahapanchayat, former MP Shailendra Mahato said the government was intentionally depriving innocent people of their rights enshrined in the act. The CNT Act came into force in 1908. “The act was framed during the British rule to safeguard the interest of local people and now the state government is trying to make amendments according to the need of influential people. We are not going to accept the amendment that is against the interest of masses,” said Mahato.
Former MLA Surya Singh Besra, who is known for his firebrand image since the times of Jharkhand movement, said they would also challenge the move of the state government in court.
Officials have been depriving innocent people for decades but now the Jharkhand high court has asked the state government to strictly implement the act and protect the people of reserved category. “We will fight any move to bring change from all possible forums including in courts and safeguard the interest of innocent people,” said Besra. It was also decided that awareness programmes would be organized by holding rallies and meetings to garner support of like-minded people.