There is a need to build up a "people's movement" against the government's policy of setting-up special economic zones, social activist and Narmada Bachao Andolan leader Medha Patkar said on Saturday.
"The multinational companies have turned resource-rich Orissa, Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand to a battleground to pursue their own agendas. As citizens of the country, we will not allow these big companies to trample us to achieve their objective," she said at a two-day summit on 'Globalisation and Fast Industrialisation versus Alternative Development Model' here.
SEZs would not benefit common people. "The policy was designed to help corporate houses become richer at the expense of the poor. The SEZs are not Special Economic Zones, rather they are Special Exploitation Zones," she said.
The MNCs had discovered new ways to grab land from farmers and both the state and Central governments were "dancing to their tune", she claimed, coming down heavily on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram, Union Commerce Minister Kamal Nath and his deputy Jairam Ramesh.
Though the ministers are airing different views in public on SEZs, they are understood to have supported the policy which was framed outside the country, the social activist alleged.
Social activists all over the country have been invited to chalk out a strategy to build up a movement against the "disastrous policies" emerging from globalisation at Gandhi Sangrahalaya in New Delhi on November 14 and 15, she said.