Coal India violating rights of adivasis, claims Amnesty

The rights of adivasis have been violated by the coal producing companies, said Amnesty India chief Aakar Patel

taru

Taru Bhatia | July 13, 2016 | New Delhi


#coal companies   #adivasis   #Coal India   #Amnesty India   #rights   #parliament  

(Photo: Taru Bhatia)

Amnesty International India has released an investigative report on how mining operations by India's largest coal producing state-owned Coal India Limited has violated the rights of adivasis. 

The report – when land is lost, do we eat coal? – released on Wednesday has traced Coal India subsidiaries in Jharkhand, Odisha and Chattisgarh. It highlights how  authorities and the company has failed to consult adivasi communities and forest dwellers before  ‘grabbing’ their land.
 
“We need to question what development we are talking about, if that doesn't include adivasi and poorest of poor,” said V. Kishore Chandra Deo, former union minister for tribal affairs.
 
The report also underlines the environmental impacts of mines, which seriously affects the lives of the indigenous communities. 
 
The report is not about the UPA government or the NDA government, it is about the rights of adivasis that have been violated by the coal producing companies including state owned Coal India Limited, said Aakar Patel, executive director, Amnesty International India. 
 
"The government plans to nearly double coal production by 2020, and Coal India wants to produce a billion tonnes of coal every year. Yet both the company and central and state governments don't seem to care to speak or listen to vulnerable adivasi communities whose lands are acquired and forests destroyed for coal mining," he added.
 
The organisation shared the report with the central and state governments and the Coal India limited, however, neither of them have responded to it yet, Patel said.
 
The report exposes a pattern of human rights violations in open cast mines run by different Coal India subsidiaries that are South Eastern Coalfields Limited's Kusumunda mine in Chattisgarh, central Coalfields Limited's Tetariakhar mine in Jharkhand and Mahanadi Coalfields Limited's Basundhara-west mine in Odisha. 
 
Patel, while releasing the report said, "We are not against mining…but [against] the irresponsible method with which the coal is extracted."
Aruna Chandrashekhar, a senior researcher of the report with Amnesty International India, said adivasis were left out  of decision making and were not spoken to before the coal companies acquired their land for mining. 
 
Indian companies have breached both Indian and international laws by not respecting human rights, including by carrying out due diligence to ensure that government agencies conduct proper consultation with regard to coal mining operations. This responsibility exists over and above compliance with national laws, Chandrashekhar added. 
 
To make matters worse, in recent years, successive governments have sought to dilute requirements for public hearings for certain categories of mines, putting the rights of local communities at further risks, she said. 
 
Sudha Bharadwaj, a human rights lawyer said, "If state owned companies are doing such human rights violations, imagine what private companies must be doing. Just imagine."
 
She added that we need to question whether we need so many power plants and coal mining at policy level. 
Amnesty International India has submitted various recommendations to the central and state governments. The most important of which is to amend the coal bearing act.
 

Comments

 

Other News

Hydro engineering college to come up in Himachal

 Prime Minister Narendra Modi has laid the foundation stone of hydro engineering college at Bilaspur in Himachal Pradesh. The college, being set up by National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) and NHPC, will provide B Tech courses in mechanical, electrical, civil and computer science discipl

BHEL commissions 3MW solar plant in Dadra & Nagar Haveli

 Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited has commissioned a three Mega Watt solar photo voltaic power plant in Dadra and Nagar Haveli.  BHEL executed this project on a turnkey basis for Dadra and Nagar Haveli power distribution corporation limited at Velugam.   It

Back to the drawing board: Kejriwal

Time to go back to the drawing board, said Delhi chief minister and Aam Aadmi Party leader Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday, days after his party failed to make its mark in the Delhi civic elections.   In a message, Kejriwal said that in the last 2 days, I spoke to many vo

Grasp the nettle by taxing rich farmers

  The tax net needs to be expanded and the rich farmers must pay up their taxes. This week saw quite a bit of going back and forth over this prickly issue after Niti Aayog member Bibek Debroy batted for taxing agricultural income.   Niti Aayog vice chairman A

Attention to NTDs, dream of an equal, accessible internet and the struggles of CIC

  A giant yellow inflatable schistosomiasis worm, with ‘Making Schistory’ printed on it, floated on Lake Geneva, marking the five years since the London Declaration on neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). Though in 2015 about 1.59 billion people received treatment for at least

BBNL, BSNL to provide broadband connectivity to 1.3 lakh rural post offices

In order to provide broadband connectivity of BharatNet to post offices in rural areas, Bharat Broadband Network Limited (BBNL), department of posts and Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) have signed a tripartite agreement.   The agreement is the first tri-partite MoU which



Video

शहीदों के लिए आगे आये आईएएस अफसर

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter