CPI(M) affiliated Himachal Pradesh Kissan Sabha (HKS) today submitted a memorandum to State High Power Committee setup to assess and review the encroachment made by the farmers demanded to review the cases under Himachal Pradesh Land Revenue Act 1954. The President of HKS Mr. Kuldeep Singh Tanwer & General Secretary Mr. Rakesh Singha said in the memorandum released to media after submitting to Committee Chairman led by Revenue Minister Kaul Singh Thakur today they had raised nine points including basic law to decide matters related to agriculture land and any other related dispute.
The memorandum demanded that question of title could only be decided by the provisions and procedure laid down in the Himachal Pradesh land Revenue Act 1954. They maintained that courts have repeatedly held such disputed title could not be adjudicated by summary trial like it was being done by the application of the Himachal Pradesh Public Premises Act 1971. Kissan Sabha demanded that the Government should deal such cases under section 163(A) of Himachal Pradesh Land Revenue Act 1954 as it was notified in the Gazette after amendment in the law on April 2000.
They said that BJP-HVC Government also notified a scheme in the year 2002 and had offered to the farmers for regularization of encroached Govt. land on fulfillment of certain conditions by inviting applications. Kissan Sabha said that as many as 167339 farmers from throughout the State accepted that they have encroached upon the Government land with maximum cases from Kangra followed by Mandi, Shimla districts etc.
Farmers demanded that HP Land Revenue Act 1954 was amended in 1994 to resolve three different encroachment policies brought in 1987, 1988 and 1994 as it should be supported by the law. They said the farmers have to suffer as the latter the validity of the encroachment policies and subsequently the amendment brought to the land revenue act by enacting section 163(A) before challenged in the High Court. They alleged that since than no Governments in the State did not plead the matter before the Court leading miscarriage of justice now taking place thousands of farmers who had applied for regularization of encroachment on Govt. land under good faith have been victimized.
HKS alleged that 90 per cent of them belong either to Dalit families or are poor farmers having less than 5 bighas of land or those who were sanctioned nautor land before 1980 but Pattas could not be issued to them or those whose land were destroyed by some kind of natural calamity, flash flood, cloud burst or land destroyed by heavy rain, construction of roads, hydel projects or any other kind of construction work.