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HindustanTimes Thu,28 Aug 2014

Gujarat's Sikh farmers oppose legal aid

Zia Haq, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, August 22, 2013
First Published: 21:49 IST(22/8/2013) | Last Updated: 21:50 IST(22/8/2013)

Sikh farmers settled in Gujarat, who are battling the state's decision to evict them permanently citing a land use law, have opposed a move by the Punjab government to depute advocate general Ashok Aggarwal to argue their case in the Supreme Court.

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"It is our fundamental right to appoint a lawyer of our choice and no lawyer can be thrust upon us by any legal party in the garb of legal aid," a letter signed by some of the affected families said.

HT had first reported a National Commission for Minorities report that the Narendra Modi-led Gujarat government had "prima facie" discriminated against the state's 500-member Sikh community in Kutch by ordering them to sell their land and return to Punjab because they were not Gujaratis, citing the Bombay Tenancy and Agricultural Lands Act, 1948.

"We are fighting Narendra Modi, who has terrorised us on communal lines," the statement said.


 


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