The legal face of corporate land grab in Chhattisgarh

In the entire mineral rich region of Orissa, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh, where even non-Naxal areas (Posco, Kathikund, Kalinganagar, Narayanpatna, Potka) are seeing brutal police repression, mining seems to be the motivating factor for a ground clearing of the adivasis – if necessary by war, as in Dantewada. However, the present note does not seek to document the above in any detail, but only deals with a very specific aspect of the above process, namely the legal framework in which it is sought to be legitimized, and some of the serious issues that the “legal face” of this land grab raises. The understanding of these legal processes has come, not so much from an academic study of law, but from our experiences as a group of lawyers organized as “Janhit Peoples’ Legal Resource Centre” in Bilaspur, Chhattisgarh, which tries to provide group legal aid to peoples’ movements, village committees, NGOs, Trade unions etc.

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