India updatePublished by MAC on 2007-02-23
23rd February 2007
Late last year we reported the huge resistance of farmers and their families in Singur, to the imposition of a massive car manufacturing lant on their land by Tata, backed by the so-called left wing "peoples" state government of West Bengal.
While this struggle did not directly relate to mining, it has galvanised criticism around the country over the headlong pace at which land is being stolen from farmers and Indigenous peoples in favour of the industrial sector (including mining), especially through the designation of special economic zones (SEZs), with their raft of tax breaks and dilution of adequate social and environmental standards.
Now, while the Indian Supreme Court seems increasingly powerless to intervene to prevent such desecration, Calcutta's High Court has ruled that the Singur acquisition was illegal.
Will this set a precedent?