Loktak: Even as the Cabinet cleared the contentious Land Acquisition Bill on Thursday, claiming to protect land rights from private developers, at Manipur's Loktak Lake, it is the government that is evicting the locals.
The Manipur government even burnt homes of fishermen on Loktak Lake to move them out, offering them just Rs 40,000 as one-time compensation to leave homes. The fishermen were evicted to make way for dam, and the notice was published in newspaper, not even served to them.
CNN-IBN travelled to Loktak and met the island people to find out what was happening. There was one Oinam Memcha, fighting a losing battle. The Manipur government calls people like her "occupiers" and a threat to Northeast India's largest fresh-water lake. Huts like hers built on Loktak's unique floating biomass or phumdis are being burnt down. Memcha said her son died of shock after the police burnt his hut in its eviction drive. She said, "I am surviving only through fishing in Loktak."
Deep within the lake, CNN-IBN met fisherfolk who are resisting eviction. In 2011, the state government published a notice asking them to leave the lake with a one-time compensation of Rs 40,000....more
06:42 PM, Dec 14, 2012