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Guj's Kevadiya tribals threaten non-cooperation movement against tourists

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Rajpipla (Gujarat), June 14 (Ajit Weekly News) The tribal residents of Kevadiya area in Gujarat have threatened to launch a non-cooperation movement against tourists visiting the Statue of Unity, if their demands are not met.

Kevadiya Bachao Andolan Samiti members in memorandum addressed to the Chief Minister and submitted to the Deputy collector, have listed eleven grievances and said if these are not resolved they will start a non-cooperation movement on Saturday and Sunday, when a large number of tourists visit the Statue of Unity.

If tribals launch non-cooperation movement, it will directly affect the revenue that state makes from tourism in the area, tribal leaders of Kevadiya said.

In the memorandum, they have raised the issue of unfulfilled promises made by the government to those affected by Narmada dam. After a year-long agitation, the government had promised to rehabilitate the displaced and meet their demands. Tribals have alleged that five years have passed since the promises were made, but not a single one has been met.

The state government should scrap the Eco Sensitive Zone notification, affecting 121 villages, as villagers are opposed to the plan, they have said. The Statue of Unity Development Authority has retrenched several tribal youths in the last few years, and the government should reinstate them, they demanded.

Samiti has also demanded that the government should start skill development programmes in Kevadiya so that youths get jobs. They have also demanded to change the railway station’s name from Ektanagar to Kevadiya railway station. Their argument is that the name Kevadiya is the pride of the local people.

Samiti leader Praful Vasava has also demanded that as the state government has withdrawn cases against Patidars, lodged during Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) agitaion, in the same way the state government should withdraw cases against tribals lodged between 2017 and 2022.

–Ajit Weekly News

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