Thousands of tribal people from 22 villages around Chaibasa, headquarter town of West Singhbhum district, on Wednesday organised a massive rally with traditional weapons demanding the immediate removal of a local Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) camp allegedly set up illegally on tribal land and dismissal of the jawan who allegedly tried to rape a tribal woman a few days ago.
The rally was led by president of Manki Munda Association, Antu Hembrom and also attended by local MLA Deepak Birua. It started from Gandhi Maidan and went to Deputy Commissioner’s office. The participants handed over a memorandum to the DC requesting for immediate action on their demands. “We demanded the immediate removal of a local Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) camp and arrest of the jawan who allegedly tried to molest a tribal woman a few days ago, vice-president of Akhil Bharatiya Adivasi Mahasabha Mukesh Birua informed.
Addressing a public meeting, Birua warned the district administration to order for the removal of the camp within a week failing which he would take the issue to the tribal advisory committee. “According to Article 13 (2) of the Constitution, the approval of the traditional tribal manki munda samiti was a must for giving a land to anyone. It was not done in the case of the CRPF camp so it was illegal, it should be removed immediately,” Birua said.
The protestors also demanded the dismissal of the Jawan of the 174 battalion of the CRPF who allegedly tried to rape a tribal woman on September 24, in Manduedel village. Hembrom and vice-president of Akhil Bharatiya Adivasi Mahasabha, Mukesh Birua also addressed the rally and expressed concern over the rising incidents of molestation by CRPF jawans involved in anti Naxal operation in Chaibasa and other areas of the State. Leaders and activists of Adivasi Ho Samaj Mahsabha, Kolhan Yuva Raksha Sangh, various gram sabha, Khuntkattia Bhoomi Raksha Samiti and other tribal organisations also participated in the rally.