TOPIC – GIFTING OF LAND
Gifting of land, or Bhoodan in Hindi, is the government’s current obsession. It is on a spree of acquiring land. This is often termed as bhoodan to corporate houses.
Bhoodan or Land Gift movement began with Acharya Vinoba Bhave in 1951 in Telangana. An inspirational icon, Vinoba Bhave’s work & dedication impacted people all across the country. He vowed to life-long celibacy as well as selfless service for others when he was as young as 10 years old. It all began on April 18th 1951, which we now know as the historic day this movement began. Vinoba Bhave stepped into the Nalgonda district, which was the epicenter of communist activity in the region. He stayed at Pochampalli, a village with about 700 families who have him a hearty welcome. He visited the ‘untouchables’ or Harijan colony, where they asked for 80 acres of land for 40 families. As documented in history, while the discussion was going on, Ram Chandra Reddy who was the local landlord, got up and exclaimed, “I will give you 100 acres for these people.”
This made Vinoba come up with an idea, that this may have the solution for possibly resolving land issues across the country. Soon, this movement led to become the Gramdan or village-gift movement and went through many levels of allied programmes and initiatives. In October 1951 rose a demand for fifty million acres of land for the landless in the whole of India by 1957, thus turning a small goal into a mass-scale movement. The success lasted until 1957, post which it slowly faded.
Outcomes of the Bhoodan Movement
It gained a lot of success, especially in Northern India in UP and Bihar. Over 4.5million acres of land in India was given as a donation by 1957. The basic belief of land being a gift of earth, which belonged to everyone, made its way into minds of everyone. Over time, many problems later crept into the movement, such as slow progress, bribery, fake land donation, greed to get more land, or wrong implementation in some regions. The movement later failed due to increasing misuse of a voluntary movement for self-serving purposes by a few.
The Bhoodan movement is one of the most prominent land reformation movements in India and is often referred to as the “bloodless revolution” as the movement was voluntary in nature. This is an important historical event, and government exam aspirants should have good knowledge of it.