Thursday, December 14, 2006

Nagpur: Tribal woman awaits justice
Nagpur: Tribal woman awaits justice
Ketki Angre

Wednesday, December 13, 2006 (Nagpur):

For the last five years a tribal woman in Nagpur has been fighting a determined battle to get justice for her son.

Jabbebai, a Madiya tribal from the Naxal infested Gadchiroli district in Maharashtra, lost her son in a police encounter.

In March 2001, her 19-year-old son Chinna Mattami left home to go fishing with his friends but never came back.

He was shot dead by the police in an encounter, one of the many reported from this Naxal infested region.

These are also instances of tribal people caught in the crossfire between the police and the Naxals, which often go unreported.

Never give up

The police said Chinna was a Naxalite but an inquiry later proved he was innocent.

"A magisterial inquiry was ordered into the incident and that clearly said he was neither a Naxalite nor a Naxal sympathizer," said Paromita Goswami, activist.

Jabbebai approached the High Court which directed the state to pay her a compensation of Rs 2 lakh but the government got the order stayed by the Supreme Court.

On her part, Jabbebai refuses to give up the fight to clear her son's name. After an assurance from Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister R R Patil she is now hoping justice will be meted out.

Whether it is Kavita Gadgil, Priyamvada Devi Jha or Jabbebai, these are remarkable stories of courageous women who have left no stone unturned to get justice for their sons. A determined struggle that has not bowed down before any judicial hurdle or any seat of power.

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