National campaign against the fifth schedule amendment

This Fifth Schedule is under threat of being amended to effect transfer of tribal lands to non-tribals and corporate bodies....


After the Historic Samata Judgement upholding the Rights of the Tribals in the Scheduled areas, the State Government of A.P. and the central Government made the following moves:

March 6th 2000
Court Order
The Supreme Court dismissed the petitions of State and Central Governments for modification of the Samata order.
May 2000 The Andhra Pradesh government moved the Tribes Advisory Council amendment to the Land Transfer Regulation Act of 1959
July 10th 2000 The Ministry of Mines drafts and circulates a Secret Note (Ref: 16/48/97-MVI) To the committee of Secretaries proposing an amendment of the V Schedule to overcome the Samata Judgement to facilitate the leasing of land to outsiders in tribal areas.
August 2000 On popular protest and opposition the CM of AP issues  statement indicating the withdrawal of the proposed amendment
September 21st 2000 Indian Express carried an article in the edit page exposing secret note of Ministry of Mines titled "displacement not an issue" by Manoj Mitra
September 24th 2000


Another widespread protest against the proposed bauxite mine in Tribal Areas of Visakhapatnam 
September 30th 2000 An Action Alert was put out for Starting a campaign to protect the rights of tribal people under the banner of CPCNR (Campaign for peoples control over natural resources) and the secret note was widely circulated.
December 2000 A national consultation was called for at India Social Institute (ISI) Delhi on Land Acquisition act, V Schedule and Rehabilitation and Resettlement Policy, in which many Political parties also sent their representatives.
Till January 2001 Extensive coverage of this issue in the national & regional Media and many people have written to to the concerned minister including the PM and the President. 
January 26th 2001

The President in his Republic Day speech issued a veiled warning against plotting to amend the V Schedule of the Constitution.
February 2001 The BALCO divestment process was in progress and raised a controversy in the V Schedule and Samata Judgement.
March 15th 2001 The controversy on the tribal land being leased to private companies dogged the Central Government and finally on March 15 the PM to a question by Arjun Singh replied in the Rajya Sabha that the Government has no intention of amending the V Schedule to overcome the Samata Judgement.
April 2001 The Central Government moves the SC to post all cases related to BALCO to its jurisdiction and the SC issues orders. The much awaited opportunity to review the Samata judgement is opened again this time in the court of law..
May 1st2001 Draft Approach Paper: Tenth Five Year Plan (2002 - 2007) speaks of the Samata Judgement as a hurdle to private coal mining and suggests "other amendments" to overcome the hurdle.
May 11th2001 Mr. Arun Shourie, Minister for dis-investment issues a statement that they want to review the Samata Judgement. Hindu Business line, May 11 2001. New Delhi Bureau

And so the efforts continue for depriving Tribal India of its means of survival. The next section summarises and links some of the documents cited here and other Press clippings.