Some 10,000 Dalits and Adivasis – Indians who are marginalised and socially-excluded due to caste and ethnicity – have rallied in the Umariya district of Madhya Pradesh, India to demand land for the landless.
Dalits and indigenous Adivasis account for more than 36% of the population in Madhya Pradesh, but they own just 3.6% of the land. Nationally, none of the Millennium Development Goals will be achieved for these groups, which account for some 300 million people or more than a quarter of India’s population.
At rallies on 6 October and 15 October, participants demanded that the government provide five acres of property to landless women and families. They are also calling on officials to place the land titles in the women’s names.
On 15 October, the International Day of Rural Women, activists also met with government ministers in the states of Bihar and Jharkhand to present their petitions for land rights.
This campaign for justice, which is being organised by the National Confederation of Dalit Organisations (NACDOR) in collaboration with GCAP’s Task Force on Social Exclusion, is using the tagline “action/land 2015” in conjunction with action/2015.
Meanwhile, on World Food Day – 16 October – NACDOR launched “action/Nutrition 2015” in six Indian states to demand not just food, but fully nutritious food. This Campaign on Nutrition for Dignity has been organised in Bihar, Haryana, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh.