Adilabad: BJP MP from Adilabad, Soyam Bapu Rao has asked tribals to stop forest officials from planting saplings on their lands, uproot the plants and if needed beat the forest officials.
"If Forest Department officials come to take over your Podu (form of shifting cultivation) lands and plant sapling, stop them. If needed beat them up and uproot the saplings which are planted by them, I will see what will happen," said Rao.
"We were always fighting for our rights and there are also many cases pending on us. We should fight against the government for our tribal rights. Tribals, you don't need to worry because I will fight for your rights," he added.
Rao attended an event to mark the death anniversary of tribal leader and Tudum Debba founder Siddam Shambu at Utnoor Mandal on Saturday.
His statement comes amid the afforestation drive being carried out by forest department personnel in the state.