Sunday, October 29, 2006

Jharkhand Maoists all set to re-distribute 10,000 acres of land

Jharkhand Maoists all set to re-distribute 10,000 acres of land
Web posted at: 10/29/2006 2:47:56
Source ::: IANS

Ranchi • Despite a good monsoon, farmers in Jharkhand are refusing to till their land due to fear of Maoists who have warned them against cultivation. The result is that around 10,000 acres of cultivable land is lying fallow in the state.

Maoists of the banned Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) say the land belongs to the poor and hope to redistribute it soon to the poor and needy.

The CPI-Maoist put black flags on thousands of acres of land in different parts of the state before the monsoon and decreed against farming activity there. The worst affected districts are Palamau, Hazaribagh and Chatra. Maoist rebels threatened the land owners to face their wrath if they dared to plough the fields.

“The rebels think the land belongs to the poor,” he said.

Jharkhand was declared drought-affected for four consecutive years by the state government. But this year the rainfall was enough for sowing of paddy. Palamau, one of the worst drought-affected districts that fall under the rain shadow zone, had good rains. However, the joy of farmers at the hope of tilling their fields evaporated when the Maoists issued the diktat.

According to an estimate, more than 10,000 acres of land is lying fallow due to the Maoist threat.

“We have information about the Maoist ruling. At some places we deployed security forces but the farmers did not dare to plough the fields,” said Uddayan Kumar, superintendent of police, Palamau. “We find it difficult to take action as the farmers do not lodge any complaint to police,” he said. The farmers said the police cannot ensure their safety since the Maoists run a parallel government in rural areas and the cops themselves are at a disadvantage.


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