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"Development and Displacement' Consultation held at Imphal

Imphal, 26th September, 2016



The Centre for Research and Advocacy, Manipur (CRAM) organized the Manipur State Consultation on "Development and Displacement" at Manipur Press Club, Imphal on 26th September 2016. The Consultation is aimed to reflect on the pattern of the introduction of unsustainable development processes and forced eviction in Manipur and the arbitration of developmental and human rights based approach to development. Miloon Kothari, Former UN Special Rapporteur on Adequate Housing & Land Rights, Ms. Shivani, Executive Director, Housing and Land Rights Network, Phulindro Konsam, Chairman, Committee on Human rights, Maibam Nganbi Leima, JAC on Lamphel Yaipha Leikai Eviction victims graced as presidium members.

Haobijam Kumar, All Loktak Lake Areas Fishermen Union (ALLAFUM) shared how the 105 MW Loktak Multipurpose Hydroelectric Project has led to inundation of more than 80, 000 acres of agriculture land, causing untold miseries on fishing communities depending on Loktak wetlands for their survival. The forced imposition of the Loktak Lake Protection Act, 2006 by the Government of Manipur has led to arsoning and displacement of fishing communities from Loktak Wetlands. He stressed on the need for decommissioning of 105 Loktak Project and to recognize peoples' rights.

Mr. Dominic, Chairman, Mapithel Dam Affected Villagers Organization (MDAVO) shared how the Govt violated the agreement on rehabilitation and resettlement in 1993 and how the Government manipulated the rehabilitation and resettlement processes. The Mapithel dam unleashed endless violations. By destroying the livelihood sources, by submerging the land, forest and other livelihood sources, the Mapithel dam has led to severe food shortage and impoverished affected communities.. Affected communities are further restricted from gaining access to their catchment areas treatment plan. The Mapithel dam construction has violated India's forest laws. He insisted that the Mapithel dam should not be commissioned and release water from dam reservoir.

Mr. Gongchalung Gangmei, JAC Marangching on Trans Asian Railway, shared how the ongoing construction of Trans Asian Railway works has led to widespread environmental and social impact in Tamenglong district. The direct discharge of mud and earth debris from railway tunnels and cutting of forest land into the Rivers, streams and agriculture land has led to loss of livelihood and survival sources in Tamenglong District. Mr. Mandir Laishram of Heirok Agriculture Land Protection Committee, shared that the proposed Heirok Branch Canal of Thoubal Multipurpose Project will led to forced acquisition of agriculture land.

Ms. Shivani of Housing and Land Rights Network, New Delhi express concern with the range of mega development projects that led to forced eviction in Manipur. She stressed the need for stronger adherence to human rights principles and practices in development processes in Manipur. Miloon Kothari, former United Nations Special Rapporteur on Housing and Land Rights shared that forced Eviction constitutes a gross violation of human rights. The right to Remedy and right to land as rehabilitation for forced acquisition of land is completely neglected and sidelined in Manipur. The disrespect of legal provisions with safeguard for communities and recommendations of Nations Human Rights bodies is a serious concern in Manipur. Mr. Miloon also stressed to ensure accountability of the state, corporate bodies and other involved in development injustice in Manipur.

The consultation adopted a general recommendation to urge the Government of Manipur to stop all formed for forced eviction and displacement without the free, prior and informed consent. All development processes should respect the rights of indigenous peoples over their land and resources and to take their consent before any development processes. The Government of Manipur should stop all forms of forced eviction in Manipur and also to adhere to all human rights and development standards, including the recommendations of the United Nations Human Rights special procedures on controversial development projects in Manipur.

Centre for Research and Advocacy, Manipur
Sega Road, Hodam Leirak Imphal Manipur 795001
e-add: cra(DOT)manipur(AT)gmail(DOT)com


* This Press Release was sent to e-pao.net by Centre for Research and Advocacy, Manipur (CRAM) who can be contacted at cra(DOT)manipur(AT)gmail(DOT)com
This Press Release was posted on September 27 2016

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