Seven representatives from the Mahan Sangharsh Samiti (MSS), an organisation of community members from eleven villages, met the Governor at Raj Bhavan to apprise him about the grave violations of Forest Rights Act (FRA) in Mahan forests in Singrauli.
The Governor who is the custodian of tribal rights in a state, was indifferent to the issues of non implementation of the FRA as well as forgery during the gram sabha that were raised by MSS during this meeting, the organisation said.
Kanti Singh Khairwar who was a part of the MSS delegation said he was shocked and saddened by the way the Governor dismissed their rights.
"This is the first time I left my home and traveled so far to meet the Governor but I cannot recover from the shock that the Governor refused to look at our memorandum and the Gram Sabha of resolution where our signatures were forged," Khairwar said.
"If the first citizen of state refuses to even to listen to us, then who will protect our rights? We have no option but to pursue our case legally and keep our fight on," he said.
Greenpeace campaigner, Priya Pillai, who accompanied the MSS members to the Raj Bhavan expressed her disappointment after meeting the Governor.
"The way the Governor flung the memorandum at the face of the people shows his scant regard for the constitutional rights of tribal people. Mahan Sangharsh Samiti is not deterred by this instead we are strengthened in our determination to save Mahan and its people's rights", Pillai said.
--IBNS (Posted on 14-08-2013)