TURA, Aug 9 - Association for Democracy and Empowerment (ADE) Tura has opposed the issuance of pattas in Tura to quite a few non-Garos, in contravention of the Meghalaya Land Transfer Act by Garo Hills Autonomous District Council (GHADC).
“From reliable sources we have come to know that land pattas have been allocated by GHADC to 14 people namely, Swapan Rishi, Arun Rishi, Otish Rishi, Govinda Rishi, Lal Mohan Rishi, Jumbura Rishi, Nironjon Rishi, Amarswer Rishi, Siben Rishi, Gogal Rishi, Sudangshu Rishi, Dilu Rishi, Mongol Rishi,” alleged ADE president, Dalseng B Ch Momin.
“The real concern for us is that the beneficiaries are not from the indigenous community. Meghalaya Transfer of Land Regulation Act, 1970 was specifically formulated to safeguard and protect the rights of local indigenous tribals on the issue of ownership of land and the allocation of pattas contravenes the law,” he added.
Citing Section 3 (1) of the Act which clearly mentions that “No land in Meghalaya shall be transferred by a tribal to a non-tribal or by a non-tribal to another non-tribal except with the previous sanction of the competent authority”, the NGO said.
“Quite a few non-tribal people were given land ownership in Tura. They are using these pattas for various purposes like acquiring loans, building business establishments and many other commercial uses. This kind of misdeeds dilutes Section 21(e) of the Meghalaya Transfer of Land Regulation Act, 1971,” added Dalseng.
The NGO, which filed a complaint to the CEM of GHADC, has sought for immediate cancellation of the illegal pattas.