PATNA: Jitan Ram Manjhi recently claimed in an interview, “I did many things in the social sector that even Nitish Kumar could not do”. One of the “many things” has been his cabinet’s decision to give 30 square metres of housing plots to each urban landless SC and ST family for free for 30 years. The Manjhi government has also included in the programme a provision that allows the families to renew the lease after the first 30 years. B. Pradhan, the principal secretary at the cabinet secretariat, said: “Land plots to be given to urban landless Dalit families will be purchased on circle or government rate. Land categories meant to given to urban Dalit on lease for 30 years will be khas mahal, kaiser-e-hind and gair majarua (land types).” All SC and ST families in the state are already entitled to 3 decimals (about 122 square metres) of land free of cost under a scheme introduced by Manjhi’s predecessor and JD(U) leader, Nitish Kumar.
Published in the February 2015 issue of the Forward Press magazine
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