Churachandpur: After their failed attempt to carry out a land survey at Sielmat village in Churachandpur district on April 11, the Forest and Revenue Department on Thursday too tried to carry out another land survey at the same village, which was met by stiff opposition from the villagers.
Sielmat villagers blocked all the entrance and exit points of the village to show their resentment and repudiation against surveys being carried out in their village. The survey team was accompanied by SDO Tuibong Jangminlen Lupho and ADM Churachandpur S. Thienlaljoy Gangte. Despite their persistent efforts, the survey team could not go ahead with the survey as the villagers along with various Civil Society Organisations strongly opposed the survey. The team were shouted at by the villagers with the “Go Back” slogan, after which the team headed back as they could no longer carry out their intended survey.
The Sielmat Village Chief also submitted a letter of objection to the survey team, informing them that Sielmat being a bonafide Patta land is never a part of the so-called Khoupum Protected Forest area, which is never in their knowledge.
The survey must be stopped immediately unless the motive of the survey is established, the chief objection letter added.
Another team was also blocked at Valpakot village along the Chura-Sugnu road. The survey team headed by SDO Saikot was stopped from proceeding further by a large crowd of people at Saikot by blocking the Chura-Sugnu road. The Churachandpur Police also arrived soon after; however, the survey team headed back as they could no longer proceed for duty.
Later in the afternoon, the Divisional Forest Officer convened a meeting of various stakeholders at its office located in Bijang.
Saikot MLA Paolienlal Haokip and 58 Churachandpur AC MLA LM Khaute have also written to the Forest & Environment Minister regarding the matter, informing him to instruct the concerned officials to cease further surveys before the contentious land issues are satisfactorily clarified.