UN rights experts apprised of violation of rights of indigenous Pradhan Newars for construction of a mega business complex

Kathmandu, 9 Feb

Two non-governmental organizations have submitted an urgent communication to UN rights experts alleging that a Nepali private company has unlawfully acquired the communal trust lands of indigenous Pradhan Newar community of Kathmandu to construct a mega business complex. As a result, the religious and cultural customs and traditions of Pradhan Newars based on the pond and its embankment lands have been devastated and thus their cultural rights and rights to cultural rights and rights to lands and resources violated, the communication reads.

Lawyers’ Association for Human Rights of Nepalese Indigenous Peoples and National Coalition Against Racial Discrimination jointly submitted the communication to the UN Special Rapporteurs on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and in the field of cultural rights on Monday. They have urged the Special Rapporteurs to correspond with the Government of Nepal about the need to take immediate action to defend, protect and promote the rights of the indigenous Pradhan Newars to their land, resources, sacred places and culture. More

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PHILIPPINES: Mining the Last Frontier

Lucrative mining projects backed by foreign investors are destroying forests and threatening indigenous tribes who live off the land in the Philippines’ Palawan. Aljazeera’s 101 East explores if a balance could be struck between development and local interests.

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BANGLADESH: Delay in CHT Development Work – International agencies blamed

Monday, March 5, 2012

Staff Correspondent

Many international agencies often complicate matters further trying to address the Chittagong Hill Tracts issues, Gowher Rizvi, international affairs adviser to the prime minister, said yesterday.

These complications delay development works in the hilly areas, he observed adding that the international organisations and those working on the CHT issues should focus more on how to implement the peace accord.

Gowher was speaking at a discussion titled “Implementation of the Chittagong Hill Tracts Accord and the government’s election pledge: achievement and scope”. The programme was jointly organised by Kapeng Foundation and the Association of Land Reform and Development at Cirdap auditorium in the capital. More

CAMBODIA: Indigenous land exploited

Tep Nimol
Friday, 02 March 2012

The Royal Government of Cambodia and private land developers were exploiting indigenous communities in Mondulkiri and Ratanakkiri provinces by signing concession deals for the communities’ land without prior consultation, advocates said yesterday.

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“We urge the government as well as the private sector to respect [indigenous peoples’] rights to their land . . .  and their rights to independence and cultural integrity,” Chhith Sam Ath, executive director of the NGO Forum, said. More

INDIA: Consent of local village councils must for mining – Tribal Affairs Minister

Kishore Chandra Deo | Consent of local village councils must for mining

Gram Sabhas should become more effective as this will ensure transparency, and corruption will be minimized

Liz Mathew 

New Delhi: The environment ministry will not clear any mining in forest areas unless local village councils give their consent, Kishore Chandra Deo, minister of tribal affairs and Panchayati Raj, said in an interview. A Congress leader from Andhra Pradesh, Deo took charge of the two ministries in July. He said the revival of village councils is the best way to ensure larger people’s participation in governance Edited excerpts: More

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