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22 Dalit families still not able to occupy land in Krishnagiri district

R. Arivanantham

They were given pattas in 1981; have a court order in their favour

— Photo: N. Bashkaran

Seeking justice:The Dalits of Ramapuram village in Choutealli Panchayat in Krishnagiri district

KRISHNAGIRI: Despite having a court order on land allotment in their favour, 22 Dalit families are still not able to occupy their allotted land at Ramapuram in Choutealli Panchayat in Krishnagiri district,

These families were issued house site pattas on a 1.46-acre plot in June 4, 1981. However, Caste Hindus opposed the move and prevented them from occupying it. The Dalit families approached the Munsif Court in Krishnagiri, which pronounced a judgment in their favour on August 12, 1991.

Following the judgment, the special tahsildhar, Adi Dravidar Welfare, directed the Village Administrative Officer to measure the land and hand it over to the Dalits on August 15, 1991.

The Dalit families put up thatched huts on August 16, 1991. But, it was alleged, that the same night, the huts were damaged and the materials were taken away by Caste Hindus.

Besides, the Caste Hindus claimed that the land should be used only for offering prayers during temple functions.

Based on a memorandum submitted to the Collector by the Dalit families, the RDO measured the land and put up corner stones in 1994. However, these stones were allegedly removed.

The RDO also turned down the Caste Hindus' request for construction of a temple on that piece of land on April 26, 1994.

The Dalit families told The Hindu on Thursday that they were not even allowed to use the common toilet built by the government. They urged the Collector to intervene and do justice to them.

When contacted, T. Paarivel, District Adi Dravidar Welfare Officer, said on Friday that the issue would be sorted out amicably in consultation with the Collector in a month.

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