Mangalore: Social Activist Medha Patkar Slams Corporate Industries
Pics: Spoorthi Ullal
Daijiworld Media Network – Mangalore (PS)
Mangalore, Mar 6: “Though the Narmada dam construction project was stopped after a tough agitation by the Narmada Bachao Andolan, lacs of farmers are yet to be rehabilitated and environmental conditions are yet to be restored. But again, sand mafia on the bank of the river is still a matter of concern,” said noted social activist Medha Patkar.
She was chairing an interactive session with students held at Roshni Nilaya on Tuesday March 6.
To a query, she said that the Gujarat government which claimed agitators had used foreign funds for the movement against the setting up of the canal lost the case filed with the Supreme Court. “Farmers are not ready to give their land as the thirst of the people of Kutch and Saurashtra has not been quenched,” she added.
About the Delhi and Mumbai industrial corridor project, she said that 20,000 hectares of land will be used at a huge cost of $ 90 billion and this needs a ‘generation-long agitation’.
About MSEZ, Patkar said that ignoring the SEZ Act, the corporate industries acquired farmers’ land forcibly. “Corporate industries need to be opposed. Both the central and state government are making crafty efforts to notify the land which was de-notified by Yeddyurappa during his stint, which may be one of the best works done by former CM”, she said.
She said that in India, there is corruption in every developmental project as there is accumulation of money by corrupt and politically-backed officials.
Patkar also pointed out that just as there exists the ‘Below Poverty Line’, there should be ‘Above Poverty Line’ also wherein high tax should be imposed on the richest segment of people. “There is also need for guaranteeing Provident Fund and minimum wage for unorganized labor class people who constitute 96 percent of India,” she said and called upon journalists to conduct rapid investigative reports on the deep-rooted corruption menace.
She called upon the youth to take part in large numbers in the movement ‘National People’s Parliament’ (Rashtreeya Jan Sansad) to be held in Delhi from Monday March 19 to Friday March 23.