Land Dispute turned Caste Conflict: Gandhi Shanti Mitra Intervene, Resolve and Unify
Gandhi Shanti Mitra Lallan Kumar informed Swaraj Peeth Bihar Coordinator Sanjiv of violent caste polarization on Yadav vs non-Yadav lines in 5 villages of Raghopur Block due to a long standing land dispute between two, one being a Yadav and the other a Bhumihar by caste. A violent conflict lead to police case; and as a result threatened larger polarization and violent retaliation while both the parties were supposed to hold their Panchyat later August 2014. In order to pre-empt violence, open conflict and consolidation of caste based polarization and finally a bitter divide within the village community, Sanjiv and Lallan toured all the six villages, namely Fakeerna, Motipur, Bauraha, Karjain, Daulatpur and Ratanpur on 24th -25th August 2014. They held a meeting of the leaders and elders of both the groups for rapprochement and resolution. An elder Kameshwar Prasad, 90, scolded them saying “aren’t we ashamed that Sanjiv has to come all the way travelling a hundred km to resolve our dispute and bring us together?” The issues were discussed and so were the implication of their conflict on the collective community life, its strength, mutual security and peace. Both the principal adversary admitted they were neighbors. On occasion of festivals or on occasion of grief they have been together with each other and cannot live in a perpetual animosity. Once something like this becomes a police case they are get fixed and cast into relationship of animosity. Hence it was decided that they will together sign a letter of agreement declaring they have resolved the issue through peaceful means and the other one will withdraw the case from the police. It is of interest to not that Lallan Kumar was one of the participants in a four day Hind Swaraj discourse Rajiv had in one of these villages, Karjain, on India- Nepal border in 2004. The seed sawn then grew in Lallan Kumar over these ten years!