Manipur: Land Rights of Tribes; No Khas lands in State Hills

The governing administration appears to have discovered a new sadistic delight for aggressive ‘territorial fantasy’ by declaring that the ‘Hill Areas’ of Manipur are a ‘No Man’s Land’ under the dehumanising colonial notion of ‘terra nullius.’

The tribals, on the other hand, regard ‘land’ as holy. “It is a prohibited thing for the Nagas not to defend their ancestral land and forest from the entrance of the enemy (emphasis added),” according to their forefathers’ ancient belief system.

“Land is their most important natural and valuable asset and imperishable endowment from which the tribals derive their sustenance, social status, economic and social equality, permanent place of abode and work and living,” writes the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India in Samatha vs. State of Andhra Pradesh & Ors. It is a safe haven as well as a source of economic empowerment. As a result, the tribes have strong emotional attachments to their homelands. The land on which people live and work guarantees them equality of status and dignity of person, as well as a means of achieving economic and social justice and a powerful economic weapon in social democracy (emphasis added).”

Source- EastMojo

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