We voted to keep the bullet train out: Palghar tribals

The usual research on infrastructure projects keep the crucial human displacement factor out of their analysis. Most are not even aware of any such issue.

Yesterday there was bypoll in Palghar and this piece says tribals of the region voted to keep Bullet train out:

Amid allegations of EVM malfunctions and the political slugfest that followed on Monday, tribals in Palghar said they cast their votes in the bye-election to the Lok Sabha seat in the hope to keep their ancestral land from being acquired for the bullet train project. Most said they didn’t believe their situation would change.

Sevanti Shingde from Aamgaon Patilpada said tribals are against the Mumbai-Ahmedabad bullet train. “The government had said they will make provisions for the displaced people within six months, but that hasn’t happened.” Vanita Wanga, who was accompanying her, added, “What’s the big deal? We can jpress any button.”

Despite the negativity in the air, the polling booth in Aamgaon Patilpada Zilla Parishad School had a respectable number of voters waiting to exercise their franchise. According to Dassu Redia, a polling agent, the turnout here is comparatively high as votes are being cast for change. Mr. Redia, who says he participated in the Farmers Long March in Dahanu last month to protest the bullet train project, added, “People in this region will be badly affected by the project. They’ll be uprooted from their land, which is why they voting in large numbers to change the situation.”

“We want good water to drink, better job opportunities for our youth and a development plan which makes our life better, but obviously not the bullet train. This doesn’t have any connection to us,” Damu Sariya Arde, 60, of Aamgaon Patilpada said.

Hmmm

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