Encroachers grab land in Baran, no space left to graze cattle

Residents of a few villages in Shahabad region in Baran district are facing a space crunch to graze their cattle as they allege that the pastures and the water bodies have been grabbed by encroachers.

jaipur Updated: Aug 03, 2017 20:26 IST
Aabshar H Quazi
Aabshar H Quazi
Hindustan Times
Pasture land grabbed by encroachers to create problem of grazing for cattle in Baran.(A.H. Zaidi)

Amidst incidents of lynching and politics over cows in the country, residents of a few villages in Shahabad region (Baran district) are facing a shortage of space for grazing their cattle. They allege that pastures and water bodies have been grabbed by encroachers.

In every village, land is marked for grazing cattle. But Bilkhera Daang, Majhari, Mungawali and Niwari villagers are facing a shortage of land to graze cattle. “There are around 582 bighas of pasture land in the village. Encroachers have cultivated kharif crops — Urad and Bajra — on the land. Now, there’s no place where we can graze our cattle,” said Ajmer Singh and Manoj Kumar, residents of Beelkhera Daang gram panchayat.

“There are 70 houses in the village. Each house has a minimum of 10 cattle. So this is a problem for all villagers,” they said.

Another villager Gajanand alleged that around 200 bighas of forest and government land, too, has grabbed by encroachers. “There is an anicut, but the road leading to it has been grabbed. As a result, cattle are not able to reach the anicut to drink water,” he said.

A few villagers, on the condition of anonymity, said that influential members of the village are the ones encroaching.

The villagers said that they have taken up the issue with the Baran district collector SP Singh in July. However, no action has been taken.

Firoz Khan, a social activist, who tours the villagers in Shahabad region, alleged that encroachers have taken over around 300 bighas of pasture land near Kunnu river, which falls between Majhari and Mungawali villages, and are using it to cultivate crops. Similarly, they have also grabbed 250 bighas of pasture land in Niwari village.

“A pond had been constructed under the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme in Niwari village but encroachers have taken it up as well,” said Shyamlal and Hemraj, residents of Niwari villagers.

He said that sub division officer, Shahabad, and higher officials were informed but the encroachment has not been removed yet.

A villager Virendra said that around 10,000 plants were planted in 2012-13 on a piece of pasture land in Niwari but encroachers removed the plants and took over the land.

“A report on the complaints of encroachment has been sought by the Halka patwari. If encroachment is found then strict action would be taken against the encroachers,” said Shahabad tehsildar Surendra Sharma said.

First Published: Aug 03, 2017 20:26 IST