Farmers protest eviction

November 20, 2019

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PESHAWAR: A group of farmers belonging to various rural localities of the provincial capital have expressed serious concern over their forced eviction from the area for the construction of Peshawar Northern Bypass and demanded of the government to compensate them.

Addressing a protest demonstration outside Peshawar Press Club on Monday, farmers’ representatives Nabi Jan, Ismail Khan, Sikandar Khan and others said they were tilling the land for the last 80 years which was their only source of livelihood, saying the government was taking possession of the land for construction of Peshawar Northern Bypass without paying its price or providing alternate agriculture land to the people.

The demonstrators said the government was not only snatching their livelihood but also depriving them of their houses and was reluctant to compensate them.

The farmers said that they had approached the relevant provincial government officials but no one bothered to listen to their grievances. They said the land was shamilat (community land) which had been converted into cultivatable land by their elders about 80 years ago and their forced eviction was sheer injustice.

The farmers’ leaders demanded of the government to stop harassing the people, withdraw cases against them and provide alternative land for agriculture and housing and ensure payment of compensation.

Published in Dawn, November 20th, 2019