March 25, 2009
Office of the United
Nations Commissioner for Human Rights
Disenfranchisement of 20,000 Christian Tribals in the Kandhmahal
District; Plea for Postponement of Elections
We the 20 member
delegation of Kandhamal district, Orissa, mostly consisting of the
worst victims of last Kandhamal violence, particularly the local
indigenous women bring to your kind notice that we have been
repeatedly affected by the violence in Kandhamal which are being
purposefully organised by a politically vested section of the people
since 1970 onwards time and again.Some of us have been involved in
restoration of peace and normalcy in the troubled region after each
violence and contributed a lot in bring in normalcy.
That the situation in
Kandhamal is still critial and thousands of people are away from
their native villages, leading a meserable life under a precarious
condition without any livelyhood support and life security. That
those a very few who ventured to return back are staying either in
near by towns or in sub -camps without relief and police security.
Most of them are deprived of basic livelihood support and being
threatened time and again by the miscreants.
That the Kandhamal
district comes under Scheduled area out of the total population STs
3,36,809 (51.96%) and the SCs 1,09,506 (16.89%) and the others
2,01,886 (31.15%). The Hindu population in 5,27,757 where as the
That in the last violence
the entire population of the district have been disturbed and mostly
the total Christian populationand the people from the marginalised
section of the society have been highly affected. That as
revealed by the Govt. records it was ascertained that 25,177 victims
were in the relief camps as on 04.09.2008 and by now only 3176
people are in the Tikabali 701, G.Udayagiri 715, Raikia 1622 and
138 k.Nuagaon camps.Surprisingly there is no record about 22,001
number of victims those who took shelter in relief camps, whether
they returned back to their native villages or left their villages
out of fear and life insecurity.Apart from this large number of
people have fled to different near by towns out of the district and
state who are yet to be identified, recorded and brought back
home. Their loss is yet to be assesed. There is no survey of people
practically returned back to their villages, constructed their
damaged houses, received compensation for their properly damaged and
human loss and leading a normal life.
It is observed that 99%
victims are still not in a position to return back to their native
villages, practically construct their houses under Govt. supervision
and lead an usual life. Practically people are under terrible
situation of life in security as the criminals are moving freely in
the area.There is no sustainable livelihood arrangement for the
victims particularly land, fire wood, construction materials and
even water is denied to the victims.
In this situation it is
undemocratic to conduct the elections, particularly for Kandhamal
district, where thousands of people are away from their native
villages and under constant fear and life insecurity.
We also enclose a copy of
the Special Levae Petition iled by us in the Supreme Court of India.
With kind regards.
Kuidina Forum for Peace
Citizens for Justice and