The Indian Railways suffered a loss of more than Rs 100 crore due to a three-day agitation by Tana Bhagats, a tribal community in Jharkhand, staged on the railway tracks at Tori Junction in Latehar district.
The Rajdhani Express was delayed for nine hours on Thursday and later its route was changed due to the Tana Bhagats’ agitation.
On Wednesday evening, the Tana Bhagats had commenced their agitation at the railway tracks with nearly 300 members of the community. On Thursday evening a team of the district administration, including the DC and SP along with a Latehar MLA, had reached the spot and tried to convince the agitators but they did not relent.
Initially, the Tana Bhagats refused to talk to the legislator and the district administration officials and wanted to meet Soren. On Friday, the Legislator conveyed that the Chief Minister would meet them in Ranchi. After getting this assurance the Tana Bhagats called off their agitation.
The agitation has caused losses amounting to nearly Rs 100 crore to the Railways.
Railway officials claimed that on the CIC section through which the Barkakana-Barwadih line runs, two rakes carrying coal pass in an hour and the railways gets Rs 1 crore revenue from one rake. They claimed that every day between 45 to 55 rakes of the goods train pass through the line carrying coal from the mines located in Latehar, Chatra, Ranchi and Ramgarh districts.
The Tana Bhagats have been demanding an amendment in the Chota Nagpur Tenancy (CNT) Act and rights over the jungle. They are followers of Mahatma Gandhi and wear Gandhi caps.