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Call for action against illegal migrants� �sympathisers�

By Staff Reporter
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GUWAHATI, June 26 - Senior advocate Upamanyu Hazarika has written to the HS Brahma Committee, which was formed for protection of land rights for indigenous people in State, recommending action against the officials of the State revenue department and all other departments that allegedly work in connivance with the illegal migrants helping them to get settled in encroached land.

Hazarika, who headed the one-man commission appointed by the Supreme Court in 2015, also recommended a legislation reserving land on 1951 basis which according to him, would act as a disincentive to existing and potential encroachers and would be a legal barrier to any corrupt government official or a politician to give permanent rights over land to encroachers.

�I am shocked the State government has not yet placed before the Brahma Committee the reports submitted by me to the Supreme Court. Of the four reports submitted to the SC, the third report of October 4, 2015, dealt extensively with the land policy necessary to safeguard indigenous people, in the context of massive infiltration from Bangladesh,� Hazarika told The Assam Tribune.

The report had recommended that ownership of land in Assam should be henceforth reserved only for those who were citizens of India and residents in Assam in 1951 and their progeny. The Brahma Committee has invited him on June 27 on the issue. But the Delhi-based advocate won�t be present in Guwahati, for which he has sent his observations and recommendations to the committee.

�A specific legislation is the only legal barrier against well-planned encroachments. Settlement of migrants usually begins with encroachment on village grazing reserves, forest land, Govt land etc., and a complicit political establishment enables them to establish themselves on such lands,� he added.

�I found encroachers gradually also become members of the panchayat in the area in which they reside. As they settle in large numbers, within a few years they constitute a majority in the panchayat, dislodging the political dominance of the indigenous people,� he said.

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Call for action against illegal migrants� �sympathisers�

GUWAHATI, June 26 - Senior advocate Upamanyu Hazarika has written to the HS Brahma Committee, which was formed for protection of land rights for indigenous people in State, recommending action against the officials of the State revenue department and all other departments that allegedly work in connivance with the illegal migrants helping them to get settled in encroached land.

Hazarika, who headed the one-man commission appointed by the Supreme Court in 2015, also recommended a legislation reserving land on 1951 basis which according to him, would act as a disincentive to existing and potential encroachers and would be a legal barrier to any corrupt government official or a politician to give permanent rights over land to encroachers.

�I am shocked the State government has not yet placed before the Brahma Committee the reports submitted by me to the Supreme Court. Of the four reports submitted to the SC, the third report of October 4, 2015, dealt extensively with the land policy necessary to safeguard indigenous people, in the context of massive infiltration from Bangladesh,� Hazarika told The Assam Tribune.

The report had recommended that ownership of land in Assam should be henceforth reserved only for those who were citizens of India and residents in Assam in 1951 and their progeny. The Brahma Committee has invited him on June 27 on the issue. But the Delhi-based advocate won�t be present in Guwahati, for which he has sent his observations and recommendations to the committee.

�A specific legislation is the only legal barrier against well-planned encroachments. Settlement of migrants usually begins with encroachment on village grazing reserves, forest land, Govt land etc., and a complicit political establishment enables them to establish themselves on such lands,� he added.

�I found encroachers gradually also become members of the panchayat in the area in which they reside. As they settle in large numbers, within a few years they constitute a majority in the panchayat, dislodging the political dominance of the indigenous people,� he said.