The Adivasi Bhoomi Avakasa Samithi , constituted by a group of tribal organisations, will be organising demonstrations in front of the Secretariat on July 28 to press the implementation of a promise made by the former A.K. Antony government that each tribal family that did not have land or owned less than one acre would be granted up to five acres of land.

This was announced here on Monday at a press conference held by C. Raghavan Aadukkam, chairman of Kerala Adivasi Forum, Sreeraman Koyyon, convener , Adivasi Bhoomi Avakasa Samithi, B.V. Bolan, Kerala Adivasi Forum Wayanad unit president and K.T. Ramachandran of the Samithi.

The committee spokesmen alleged at their press conference that the LDF government had, through its order issued on February 24 this year, was trying to scuttle the promise made by the Antony government.

The LDF government order, copies of which were distributed at the press conference, says that “only landless tribals having no land in their name or that of their spouses having no right to any land and whose annual income is below Rs.30,000 shall be considered for allotment of land under the Tribal Resettlement and Development Mission.”

The order was based on observations made at a meeting of the “empowered mission committee” of the Tribal Resettlement and Development Mission of the Scheduled Castes/ Scheduled Tribes Development Department, which examined in detail the experience of land distribution to tribal people in the sites taken up for resettlement and rehabilitation by the Mission so far.

The committee formed by tribal organisations alleged that the government order was meant to create an impression that the number of landless tribal people was not as big as had been made out to be and also to facilitate transfer of the Aralam farm in Kannur purchased with funds from Central government to a private agency.

Spokesmen of the committee said they were now busy mobilising support of tribal people in all districts to participate in the show of protest to be staged in front of the Secretariat on July 28.

They also said there would be no compromise on the formula that led to the end of 48 days of agitation in front of the Secretariat and Mr. Antony's official residence when he was the Chief Minister. By the terms of this settlement, each tribal family having less than one acre and up to five acres, besides landless tribal families, was to get between one to five acres each.

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