GUWAHATI, April 29 - The Coordination Committee of the Tribal Organisations (CCTOA) today made pleas before the Committee for Suggesting Measures for Ensuring Protection of Land Rights of Indigenous Peoples of Assam to recommend replacement of the 1886 Assam Land Revenue Regulation (ALRR) with a modern, progressive and pro-people legislation.
In a memorandum submitted to the Chairman of the Committee HS Brahma, the CCTOA also pleaded for formulating a comprehensive land policy as the first step towards drafting the new legislation. The provisions of the Chapter-X of the present ALRR should be expanded to maximum possible extent, that is, the list of protected class of people and the area to be covered by Protected Belts and Blocks are to be maximised, said the CCTOA.
It pleaded further that the Constitution of the country should be amended suitably to accommodate the provisions of Chapter-X of the ALRR and also the autonomous councils either in the Sixth Schedule or the Fifth Schedule, or by creating yet another schedule in the Constitution.
It called for steps for restoring all the lost tribal territories and returning it to the legal owners of the land as per the 1960 UN Dhebor Commission Report, evicting all illegal land settlers from the tribal belts and blocks, including two representatives of the All Assam Tribal Sangha in each of the district and subdivision-level land advisory committees of the State and viewing implementation of Clause VI of the Assam Accord from the above perspective by treating the issues concerning land rights as the focus area, followed by reservation of seats in the State legislature. The CCTOA also called for steps to implement the Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Right) Act, 2006.