Squatters urge candidates to protect their settlement from land mafia

Rajbiraj, November 27

Squatters of Musahari Tole in Rajbiraj Municipality, Saptari, urged poll candidates in the district to protect their settlement from land mafias in return for their votes.

Rupi Mochi, a squatter from Mushahari Tole, said they had requested political leaders and candidates to protect their settlement, but no one gave assurance that their settlement would be protected.

Squatters of Musahari Tole are at risk of being displaced as some land mafias are trying to register the land where these squatters have been living, in their names. “As many as 35 Dalit households fear displacement as some land mafia are fighting tooth and nail to resister the land in their names,” Mochi said.

Voters of the settlement said they would vote for candidates who helped them protect the settlement from land mafias. “We will cast votes, but candidates must assure that our settlement will be safe and secure,” said Rajendra Sada, a local. He further said that they had been living there for decades.

Dalits of the settlement have been facing these problems for many years now. They tell stories of their plight to political leaders and candidates during every election, but in vain — once elections are over leaders and candidates forget them and their problems. However, the problem became more complicated after land mafias tried to register the land used by the Dalits in their names.