A Mahadharna by 5 Opposition parties was held in Garhwa District against the Land Acquisition Amendments Bill in which a large number of activists and leaders from 5 parties participated. Addressing the dharna, leaders from the Congress, JMM, RJD, CPI(ML), and JVM said that the Raghuvar government is bent upon amending the Land Acquisition Bill in order to grab fertile and valuable land from the people of Jharkhand and hand them over to corporate houses. ‘Development’ is a false excuse to cheat the people and the people of the country and the State have understood this. On 5 July lakhs of people in Jharkhand will come out on the streets for a bandh and herald the exit of this arrogant and anti-people government. The Opposition leaders appealed to the people of the District and the State to make the bandh a roaring success.
It is noteworthy that this time the Land Acquisition Amendments Bill has been passed after removing all the pro-people provisions such as assessment of social impact, no acquisition of land fit for cultivation and land in which crops have been sown, and food security. Even Section 4(D) of the PESA Act 1966 has been flouted which says that the Gram Sabha is the final authority, and the provision for consultation with and consent of a minim of 70% of those affected by the land acquisition has also been scrapped. The manner in which the Bill has been passed and preparations on for its notification, all democratic forces and parties other than the ruling BJP-AJSU fear that if this Act is implemented Jharkhand will be stripped of all legal and Constitutional armour such as Schedule 5B, PESA, and CNT-SPT Acts. Therefore, Opposition parties including the Left parties, adivasi and people’s organizations decided in a meeting on 18 June to hold a Jharkhand bandh on 5 July with dharna protests and marches across the State at Panchayat, Block and District levels. Under this plan, protest marches and dharnas were held on 25 June at Subhash Chowk in Ramgarh, Raj Bhavan in Ranchi, and Deputy Commissioners’ offices in Devghar, Dhanbad, Jamshedpur and Bokaro Districts in which Opposition parties and Left parties (CPI, CPM and CPI(ML) and MCC) participated.