NBA Press Release
  07 July 2002
Save The Narmada, Save Humanity!

Activist Arrested, Beaten in Ambabari by Maharashtra Police

NARMADA BACHAO ANDOLAN
B-13, Shivam Flats
Ellora Park,
Baroda-390007
Tel: 0265-282232
Email: baroda@narmada.org

62, Mahatma Gandhi Road,
Badwani,
Madhya Pradesh - 451551
Tel: 07290-22464
Email: badwani@narmada.org

Hundreds of Maharashtra police, led by the District Collector of Nandurbar, descended down upon the tribals in the Ambabari region, on July 6. They tried to arrest about a dozen tribal villagers-activists, under the pretext of 'encouraging the tree-felling and encroachment on forest land'. The Collector, without verifying the status of these lands has been acting on the misinformation provided by some political elements. The tribals here have been demanding the right over the so-called forest land, which they have been cultivating for many decades. The state-government appointed Deosthali Committee is already looking into the records and claims. The tribals do have the proofs of their occupancy for last many decades

However, when hundreds of people resisted these arrests, the police picked up Sanjay Mahajan, of Punarvasan Sangharsha Samiti (PSS), working for the rights of the ousted SSP-tribals in the area. The police beat him up mercilessly, and arrested him. An arrest warrant in the name of Ms. Pratibha Shinde of PSS is issued to prevent her from working in the area. The state administration does not want raising of the voice of the ousted tribals also. Sanjay was released in the late evening on July 7, when the last news came.

All this is happening, as the people in the Narmada valley are preparing to launch the march from Dhadgaon to Nashik, from July 8-12. PSS wan one of the main organizers for the march in their area - Akkalkua, Taloda, Shahada. The District administration is trying to obstruct the proposed march and the outside people to know about its illegalities in the SSP.

Narmada Bachao Andolan