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Living in the Shadow of Terror: People's Lives and Security Operations in Jharkhand

30 Jan 2013

It has been over a decade since Jharkhand was carved out of Bihar into a separate state. In this period the state has witnessed a new face of people’s movements against displacement and of armed repression by the state. News of the multitude of growing people’s movements around the right to water, forest and land has accompanied news of Operation Green Hunt, a joint programme of centralised armed state repression. Reports of armed operations in villages and the oppression of villagers by armed forces appear in the media in big cities in a much sifted form, and there has been a long-standing need for a detailed investigation into the roots of this violence. These news items have also been appearing in the local media apart from in the publications of Jharkhandbased human rights organisations. The current situation has naturally raised worries in democratic circles about whether the people of this mineral-endowed state are being displaced from their villages in order to serve corporate interests. Are the youth forced to migrate to other states to ensure their livelihood and safety? Are the villagers here too being persecuted in the name of dealing with the Maoists, as in case of SalwaJudum of Chhattisgarh? To answer these questions the Coordination of Democratic Rights Organisations (CDRO) decided to tour this region. The investigation was conducted in two stages. The first tour was conducted between 26 and 30 March, 2012, and the second between 19 and 23 May, 2012. The purpose of these tours was to investigate the situation related to the safety of people’s lives and to make the country aware of it.

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