Adivasi tribe living in Aarey settlement oppose government rehabilitation plan against Force One

Mumbai: In a recent development, Adivasi tribal families living in the Aarey settlement opposed the anti-development rehabilitation of land owned by Force One (Mumbai Police Specialized Counter Terrorism Unit). The government of Maharashtra after the 11/26 terror attack in Mumbai had reserved nearly 100 acres of land for Force One alongside the State Reserve Police (SRFP) land surrounded by the Adivasi people.

Vithal Lad, a prominent face who fights for the tribal community across the state and founding president of Maharashtra Adivasi Manch has alleged that the sudden declaration of rehabilitating these houses in the Aarey Adivasi settlement on 5 acres of land is nothing other than a back door from the lobby builders. “For the past 10 years, the Adivasi families living in Padas in Unit 17 (Chafecha Pada) and Unit 18 KLT Pada and Damu Pada had no problem with Force One or their activities. 5 acres of land? We oppose it because it will completely destroy the livelihoods of these people. ”

“Although the land according to the Mumbai Development Plan (DP) is reserved for Force One, however, the land is owned by tribal people who have lived here since our ancestral times. They are the true owners of this land however, with a lack of education and no support, the community has never been able to record that, ”he said.

It seems that the government has decided to relocate these Padas Aadivasi as the Force One “Fire Range” cannot be developed due to their presence. However, Lad claimed, “The area is very close to Jogeshwari Vikroli Link Road. If the fire developed here, would nearby residents staying in the high-rise building allow it? For the development of the city every time, the tribal people livelihoods are sacrificed. It is high time the government understood and protected the rights of indigenous peoples.

According to previous reports, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray this month approved the plan to relocate the Adivasis to five acres of Force One land comprising a total of 100 acres. Non-Adivasis residents will receive housing under the Project Affected People (PAP) by the Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA). While the Maharashtra Housing Area Development Authority (MHADA) will build the houses for the tribals.

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Posted on: Sunday September 26th, 2021 9:04 PM IST

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