BJP leader Aparajita Sarangi blasts Odisha govt for daring to amend tribal land law

Bhubaneswar: Bhubaneswar Lok Sabha member and senior BJP leader Aparajita Sarangi on Sunday came down heavily on the ruling Biju Janata Dal over the recent State Cabinet’s nod to a proposal that permits sale to tribal lands to non-tribals.

She said the move by the ruling party was clearly with a “malicious intent” to help some non-Odia land grabbers and select corporate houses.

The firebrand lawmaker said since strong discontentment was shimmering against the state government over the tribal land sale issue, the ruling BJD chose to cut-short the State Assembly session to just four days.

“Originally, the winter session was scheduled to sit for 30 days. However, just after four days, the ruling BJD adjourned the House sine die, ostensibly to avoid the embarrassment it faced from the Opposition. It reflects how panic the regional party is for all is wrong doings which the Opposition wanted to expose during the session,” said Aparajita.

The lawmaker stated that the Cabinet proposal to amend the Odisha Scheduled Areas Transfer of Immovable Property (By Scheduled Tribes) Regulation, 1956 to allow the sale of tribal land to non-tribal was completely “damaging” and “anti-tribal.”

Sarangi also asked some pertinent questions regarding the regulation pertaining to the transfer of tribal lands to non-tribals.

“The ruling BJD says the Cabinet decision was taken in accordance with the recommendation of the Tribal Advisory Committee (TAC). If the TAC had recommended it in July 2023, why was it kept hidden from the public domain? Why was no public consultation held? Who were the intended beneficiaries? Was it some non-Odia land grabbers or corporate groups who were behind this decision?” asked Sarangi.

She dared the state government to make public the audio and video recordings of the TAC deliberations.

“Why did the government announce the Cabinet decision while such substantive amendments to the existing law require the approval of the President of India? How can they make a public announcement of a crucial amendment without seeking the assent of the President of India? Can the Chief Minister’s Office, Odisha, answer?” she questioned.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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