New Delhi: Injecting a new dimension to the
debate on land acquisition, Women and Child Development
Minister Krishna Tirath on Monday said such steps are causing
displacement and loss of occupation for tribal women, exposing
them to "exploitation and trafficking".
The government will have to ensure security of livelihood
of tribals when their land is acquired, she said at a
conference on issue of scheduled tribe women and children.
"Large-scale displacement of tribals due to land
acquisition for development is a challenge. Women become most
vulnerable in such situations. Being mainly employed in
agriculture or forest-based livelihood, displacement deprives
tribal women of their occupation, often leading to migration
which exposes them exploitation or trafficking," she said.
The minister said the government is concerned about the
issue of land acquisition and is holding deliberations.
But regardless of the outcome of the discussions, it is
necessary to ensure livelihood security of tribals when land
is acquired for development purposes, she said, adding that
the "gender dimension" will have to be kept in mind in this
The comments assume significance against the backdrop of
the raging debate on land acquisition, which came to the fore
once again after the Bhatta-Parsaul incident of May 7 when
farmers protesting over rate of compensation for their land
taken for a road project in Greater Noida clashed with police.
In recent years, West Bengal has seen huge anti-land
acquisition movements in Singur and Nandigram while the issue
of displacement of tribals due to mining and other activities
in central India were raised by social activists repeatedly.
The government plans to amend the old Land Acquisition
Act, which has faced flak from various quarters.