Forced eviction of 45 Bodo tribal families by the forest department in Guwahati city of Assam

On January 31, 2022, 45 Bodo tribal families comprising of around 300 persons were forcibly evicted y the forest department from Nalpara area in Gorchuk in Guwahati city of Assam. The forest staff under the leadership of forest beat officer of Fatasil reportedly vandalized their houses damaging properties and evicted them without prior notice on the ground that these Bodo families were illegally occupying the land. The administration also did not make any alternate arrangement and they are now forced to live in makeshift camps without basic facilities during the winter and COVID-19 pandemic.  The forced eviction of tribals from forest land is gross violation of the Forest Rights Act 2006 which provide right to live and hold forest rights to the Scheduled Tribes. Their eviction during the COVID19 pandemic is inhuman too. On July 29, 2021, Justice A. K. Mishra, Chairperson of the NHRC stated that no tribal should be evicted without the settlement of his/her claim related to land rights. On February 4, 2022he IRAC has moved the NHRC over the issue demanding compensation of Rs 10 lakh to each evicted family and rehabilitation and resettlement to all the 45 Bodo families as per the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013 (LARR Act.

Photo credit: All Bodo Students Union