Prafulla Samantara Attacked By Vedanta Goons
By Campaign for Survival and Dignity(CSD) Odisha
11 April, 2016
Campaign for Survival and Dignity(CSD) Odisha which struggled for the enactment of Forest Rights(FRA), 2006 and presently campaigning for the establishment of Gram SabhaSarkar in the line of FRA Gram Sabhain all villages of the State today condemned the attack on Activist Prafulla Samantara, President, Lok Shakti Abhiyan by Vedanta goons.
Acknowledging the great contribution of Samantara to the tribals and forest dwellers of the State, CSD has said that PrafullaSamantra is of the courageous activists who have dared to reach nook and corners of state and have encouraged the community people who have been fighting to save their live and livelihood from the land mafia, multinational companies and corporate sector”.
It is to be noted that on 6th April 2016 PrafullaSamantra was assaulted by about 10 goons of Vedanta Company while he was returning from a meeting from Village Masiput inKoraput district.
In a Press Release alsoMr.Samantarahas shared that “I have been to give solidarity to the people of five villages who have been opposing mining over DangadeulaHill. They depend on this hill for grazing of their domestic animal,fuel wood, streams for water etc”. He alleged that the hired goons of Vedanta companyalso tried to kidnap him forcefully but failed as the villagers rushed to the spot after getting information. “Again in the afternoon when I was in a hotel of Koraput, some musclemen came to my room and threatened me not to support the local peopleresisting mining of bauxite in Dangadeulahill”, Samantara said. He further said, ““No force could stop me to go back from active support and solidarity to the people who were once displaced by Upper Kolabreservoir. This mining not only will destroy their houses nearby but also water streams will be ceased to flow ultimately it will reduce quantity of water to Kolab reservoir and pollute it”.
Samantara has also alleged that “wherever I go, the Vedanta Company is following me and have engages miscreants and musclemen to attack me physically. This is nothing but criminalization of corporate regime. This is fourth time that Vedanta goons attempted physical attack on me”
“Meanwhile the Govt. of Odisha is trying to go for mining in Niyamgiri where the Gram Sabhas of Dongariatribals had rejected mining after the historical judgement of the Supreme Court in 2013. At the same time the police repression is increasing day to day in Niyamgiri by which innocent tribals who resist Vedanta Company are victimized and are being killed and kept in jail under false allegation of maoist activities.”Samantara said.
In his press note, Samatara has also alleged that “even some of top police officers mislead the local activists of democratic movements that I am amaoist” which is totally baseless and contradictory to my ideology and activities of democratic socialism based on ideals Mahatma Gandhi, Dr. RammanoharLohia, Jayprakash Narayan and Dr. Baba SahebAmbedkar.He has called this as the cruel example of criminalization of police administration for corporate profits at the cost of democratic values and constitutional right to life and livelihood.
CSD,Odisha has urged Govt. of Odisha to give him special protection to him.