Pithoragarh, March 17
Demanding declaration of forest villages as revenue ones, thousands of residents of forest villages from around Ramnagar area in Nainital district today demonstrated before subdivisional office and took a procession around the town. Later the villagers started an indefinite dharna near the subdivision and gave a memorandum to the chief minister concerning their demands.
“We have been living in forest villages from British era and are original residents of these villages. We have been deprived of basic facilities of water connection, electricity and roads, as according to government officers, these facilities could be given to revenue villagers only,” said S Lal, coordinator of Congress SC/ ST cell in the district, which organised the protest.
The speakers on the occasion said that despite the Congress having announced converting forest villages into revenue ones in its 2012 election manifesto, it did nothing in this connection till date. ‘’UP and Chhattisgarh governments have given ownership rights to forest dwellers in their states. Uttarakhand government has done nothing in this connection despite the fact that we have sent a 17-point memorandum to the state government last December,” said Lal.
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