The events that unfolded over half-an-hour wrecked not just their homes, but their livelihoods. Members of 36 Gothi Koya tribal families in Tadwai mandal of Jayashankar Bhupalapally district allege that they were attacked by at least 200 forest officials on Saturday, who destroyed their homes, stripped them, tied them to the trees in the forest and thrashed them black and blue. They were told that they were not supposed to be living on the Jalagalancha forest land.
“We migrated years ago and we have all the mandated identity cards including Aadhar, ration cards and some of us even have voter ID cards. With no prior intimation, hundreds of officials came in tractors and brought down our homes. When the women in the village tried to stop them, they were tied up and beaten with sticks,” recalled 30-year-old Krusham Rashmi, while showing her scarred hands and feet.
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