Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Nayagarh/ Daspalla, Mar 14:
After a month-long standoff, tribals of Daspalla region in Odisha’s Nayagarh district finally agreed to allow dispatch of logs for this year’s Rath Yatra at Puri.
The district administration was able to broker peace with the tribals after negotiations with them stretched for several hours on Friday and assurance was given for completing development work in phases.
The tribals have relented from their earlier rigid stand and agreed to allow dispatch of logs for construction of chariots for this year’s Rath Yatra from Monday.
The Kui Unnayan Sangh (KUS), a body of Kui tribals residing in different forested areas of Daspalla, had held up (blocked) transportation of logs for construction of chariots of the Lords for a month demanding developmental works in the region.
The local tribals had supported the move of the Sangh putting the administration in a difficult situation. The tribals, after much persuasion by the administration earlier, had allowed transport of 14 pieces of logs and 10 pieces on Thursday for the Rukuna Rath of Lord Lingaraj in Bhubaneswar, remained rigid over their stand for not allowing transport of logs for Lord Jagannath’s Rath Yatra.
A meeting between the district administration, Forest department officials, office bearers of the KUS and people representatives was held at the conference hall of the block headquarters of Daspalla.
After hours of discussions, the administration promised to fulfill the demands of the tribals. The proceedings of the meeting were signed by officials of the district administration, people’s representatives and office bearers of the KUS.
The KUS office bearers said the district administration, which has managed to take away logs every year by making false promises to the tribals to fulfill their demands, will not be allowed a single piece of log if it fails in its promise it has made this year to the tribals.