Massacre of tribe in Orissa

January 5, 2006

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At least twelve tribal people died after police opened fire on a crowd at Kalinganagar in the Indian state of Orissa on Monday.

The people, mainly from the Ho tribe, were protesting against controversial plans to build a steel plant on their land. The plant is one of at least thirty big mining and metal factory projects being forced through on tribal land by Orissa's state government.

Bulldozers started construction of a wall at the site on Monday morning, in the presence of local officials, representatives of the company Tata Steel, and hundreds of armed police.

Orissa has a large and diverse tribal population. Thousands of tribal people in the state have already lost their land to industrialisation projects, and many thousands more have been displaced in the last twenty years by dams built to provide power and water for metal factories.

One policeman was also killed in the conflict at Kalinganagar.

For more information call Miriam Ross on (+44) (0)20 7687 8734 or email [email protected]