Tribals demand right over minerals besides Jal, Jamin, Jungle

Bhubaneswar: The CPI(M) backed Adivasi Adhikar Rastriya Manch (AARM) today added minerals along with Jal (water), Jamin (land) and Jungle (forest) as the rights of tribals living in the schedule five area.

“Tribals should have rights over all the natural resources. While they have rights over water, land and forest, the tribals should also be given similar facility on minerals,” CPI(M) Politburo member Brinda Karat said while addressing a tribal rally here.

Accusing the Centre and state governments of “looting” mineral resources and promoting corporate houses, Karat said tribal people on the other hand faced poverty, “it is sad that the people living in the mineral rich area starve.”

Stating that a huge quantity of minerals like iron ore, bauxite, chromite and others were deposited in the scheduled area of Odisha, Karat said the people should get their right.

“The people who have been guarding the minerals for generations should get the benefit when they are explored,” the CPI(M) leader said.

AARM also demanded for tribals land rights on forest area, food security, employment guarantee, ensure health and education of tribal population, end to displacement for “anti-people” industrial projects and development of tribal language and literature.