MAC: Mines and Communities

Mumbai protests against the Orissa killing

Published by MAC on 2006-01-19

Mumbai protests against the Orissa killing

Report from Orissa mining

19th January 2006

The civil society groups, trade unions, women’s group, peace and justice movements, and students, protested in Mumbai outside the Churchgate station against the Kalinganagar killing of Orissa, which took place on January 2, 2006. People demanded immediate closure of the Tata steel plant of Orissa and present justice to the deceased and affected adivasi communities. On January 2, 2006 about 21 adivasis were killed when police opened fire against the tribals protesting the takeover and seizure of their land by district administration, for the proposed TATA Steel plant at Kalinganagar in Orissa. The media and official records are claiming that 12 people have been killed, but these figures are completely fractured, the police killed 12 people on the spot and nine people later succumbed to death in the hospital which the officials are hiding.

The police have mutilated the bodies of the adivasis and one person lost his life due to excessive bleeding, as the police chopped of his hands. The government claims it as an ‘unfortunate’ incident, but this is nothing but a deliberate attempt by the state to cow down the people who are fighting for their land and livelihood. The State and corporations are encroaching tribal lands leading to destruction of livelihood and dispossession of the people. The killing has brought out the true face of the Governments and Corporations who join hands to grab resources from the tribal. The brave people of Orissa have been valiantly fighting against these nefarious plans in Baliapal, Chilika, Indravati, Kashipur, Paradip, Lakhari, Gandhmardan, etc. and have the support of all justice loving people.

There were posters that screamed justice for the adivasis who had sacrificed their lives and stood against the exploitative multinationals. The protesters lighted candle in memory of the martyred and expressed their solidarity with the struggle. The protesters questioned the economic logic of profit by appropriating and displacing the indigenous people and communities from their land and resources for the development of a few. They also condemned the violence of the state and its policies of Globalisation and Privatisation. The organizations that were part of the protest were. National Alliance of Peoples Movements, Lok Raj Sangathan, Kashipur Support Group, India Centre for Human Rights and Law, , Initiative,Forum against violence on women, Shoshit Jan Andolan, Samajwadi Janparishad, Girangaon Rozgar Haq Samiti, Peoples Political Front, Ladaku Garment Mazdoor Sangh, Narmada Solidarity Group, Zhopadi Bachao Andolan, Hind Navjawan, Chemical Mazdoor Sabha, Committee for the Rights to Housing, Focus on Global South, AITUC, CITU, Workers Federation.

India currently produces more than 800,000 tonnes of aluminium a year, but also has a 600,000 tonne annual capacity for recycling, according to industry figures. Yet the recycling rate is only around a tenth of that in "developed" countries. Despite the obvious benefits of re-use, the big aluminium producers opt instead for digging up and refining raw bauxite - with consequent adverse environmental and social consequences.

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