Dispossession of Dalit's land:

Farmers from Hunsur staging a dharna in front of the DC's office here this morning.

Mysore, July 18 (MTY&KMC)- Some farmers from Hunsur taluk, who have been staging a dharna in front of the DC's office here since July 13, today launched an indefinite hunger-strike, demanding a probe into the harassment meted out to a Dalit family by some members of an upper caste in Hunsur taluk.

The Dalit farmers, hailing from Honnenahalli village, who took out a padayatra to the city from Hunsur on July 12, began their agitation by sitting in a dharna in front of the DC's office on July 13, seeking legal action against farmers of neighbouring Vodda-mbalu village, who allegedly assaulted them.

Since the stocks of rice, vegetables and cooking gas they had brought from Hunsur were exhausted, the farmers announced of continuing their agitation on empty stomachs — fast-unto-death — till their demands are met with.

The farmers, protesting under the banner of Dalit Sangharsha Samithi (DSS), accused the government of being insensitive to the cases of atrocity on Dalits.

Cause of dispute

The dispute is over a four acre plot of land in Voddambalu village, coming under Survey No. 33, which the complainant Cheluvaiah, 60, resident of Honnenahalli village, claimed was gifted to his fore-fathers decades ago as Inaamathi (gift) land. Cheluvaiah's family is said to be cultivating the land since then.

However, in a recent development, V.T. Subrahmanya of Voddambalu village allegedly staked claim over the land, saying that he had the land registered in his name in all the government records.

The assault: According to Cheluvaiah, on the morning of May 30 last, when he and his son Mahadeva went to plough the fields as before, they were allegedly assaulted by Subrahmanya, Dasu and others.

When 108 ambulance was called to take an injured Cheluvaiah and Mahadeva to hospital, Subrahmanya and three others boarded the ambulance and got themselves admitted to the government hospital, saying they were the ones who were assaulted. Cheluvaiah added that he and his son were taken to the hospital in an autorickshaw by the Police who later arrived on the scene.

DSS allegation

DSS leader Harihara Anan-daswamy, addressing a press meet here yesterday, had alleged that though Cheluvaiah had lodged a complaint with the Police and the district administration, there was no action so far.

DSS Organising Convenor Somaiah, Convenor S. Raju, Organising Secretary K.P. Mahalingu Kalkunda and others were present. The protestors, numbering around 50, were seen dancing to the tune of drums beats and rattlers, creating a din at DC office today.


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