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Odishatv Bureau

Lanjigarh: Hundreds of Dongria and Jharania tribals of Kalahandi and Rayagada districts residing in and around the Niyamgiri hills today congregated at Lanjigarh in Kalahandi district under the banner of Niyamgiri Surakshya Samiti (NSS), a tribal outfit fighting for the protection of the hill they consider sacred, and shouted slogans against Vedanta Alumina and the police.

The massive rally was attended by noted social activist Medha Patekar, Lokshakti Abhijan leader Prafulla Samantray and Supreme Court lawyer Sanjay Parekh.

Dongria and Jharania tribals hailing from as many as 112 villages split into five groups have been holding Vijay Padayatras with their traditional weapons in hand since May 29 to celebrate the apex court’s verdict, which culminated in today’s rally.

The activists alleged that police are acting as agents of the company.

“We can do anything to save Niyam Raja. We can sacrifice our lives but would not allow anybody to mine in the hill. We will continue our struggle till Vedanta moves out from here,” said an activist.

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