Mysuru: The Kodagu district administration has sent back 200 tribal families from Bedagudda to their line houses on the plantations despite their claims of being treated as bonded labour, according to an activist backing their demand for freedom and land to do their own farming.
Speaking to Deccan Chronicle, the activist of the ‘Bhoomi Maththu Vasathi Horata Samithi’ alleged that the police had threatened the tribals and stopped them from meeting anyone interested in supporting them.
“We will now need permission from the Deputy Commissioner and the Superintendent of Police to meet the tribals who remain in Bedagudda,” he said.
The 200 tribals were the latest to join the earlier batch of tribals , who had left their line houses on other plantations and occupied the Devamaachchi reserve forest area in Diddalli many months ago only to be evicted in December last year and relocated to Bedagudda recently.
“The authorities dumped the evicted tribals in Bedagudda a week ago without making proper arrangements for them. All they have is a shamiana, ten toilets and an open tank for drinking water. They are supposed to use a godown nearby in case of rain. But they are not being given any food other than rice. They will have to put up with this until the houses are built. The tribal families relocated to Basavanahalli also have no amenities. Our hands are tied. We don’t know what to do,” cried the activist, adding that actor Chetan Ahimsa, who was backing the tribals, had gone out of the country on work, but was now back.
“We are waiting for him to meet the tribals and take up their cause ,” he said.