By- Hseng Hleng
The government seized land from farmers in eastern Shan State and threatened them to accept substitute land, according to a Shan political party.
Loung Hsai Kyauk, Shan Nationalities League for Democracy’s (SNLD) secretary for Kengtung Township, told SHAN the General Administration Officer (GAD) met with the landowners last week and offered each family 80×80 feet land plots for 55 acres that was confiscated in Nawng Nguen village for an industrial zone last December.
After refusing the deal, the GAD officer recommended they take his offer, hinting at a less desirable outcome if they don’t.
A landowner, who requested anonymity, explained that 23 families had their land taken. Many of the families are large, and all of them depend on farming as their main income. “Without our farms, our life will be gone. We also lose all hope for the future of our children.”
The Tatmadaw’s Triangle Military Command confiscated the farmland in Kengtung Township in 1995, but then returned it to the villagers in 2016.
The GAD officer is allegedly withholding the farmers’ land form-7 in his office.