Mangalore, Aug 26, 2014: The CPM and Dalita Hakkugala Samithi staged a protest in front of the MCC building on Aug 25, calling upon MCC- Mangalore City Corporation to check the misuse of funds meant for the welfare of SC/ST community members.
Addressing protesters, CPM Mangalore Nagara Samithi Secretary Sunil Kumar Bajal said that the MCC has been utilising the fund earmarked under 22.75 per cent for the welfare of Dalits to the construction of roads and drains. The funds earmarked for the welfare of SC/ST community members have not been reaching the real beneficiaries.
There are about 70 Dalit colonies in 60 wards of the MCC. All the colonies are deprived of basic amenities.
The funds earmarked for the welfare have failed to reach the true beneficiaries. The guidelines of the government clearly states that the 22.75 per cent fund kept aside by the urban local bodies should be utilised for the empowerment of Dalits.
As an example, he said that no Dalit resides in Kotekani area. But, funds have been utilised for asphalting a road. A road has been laid at an estimated cost of Rs 10 lakh for an apartment in Chilimbi Gudde in the name of welfare of Dalits. Why the MCC had failed to initiate development works in Angandigudde where a large number of Dalits reside,” he asked.
He said as per the rules each corporator has to construct one house from the funds available for the development work in his ward for a poor dalit family in a year. If it was implemented effectively, then 300 houses would have been constructed for the dalit families in 60 wards during their tenure of five years. However, none of the elected representatives have initiated the programme, he lamented.
Bajal said that six Koraga families who were displaced from Nanthoor for facilitating the work on four-laning of National Highway, are yet to get land for constructing houses. The CPM will continue its fight till the families are given land.
As per Mohammed Peer Committee recommendation for the welfare of Koraga community, the authorities should earmark one and half acre land for each Koraga family in the district, he said. Because of the efforts of the CPM, the dalit families residing in Thannirbavi area who were denied of all the welfare schemes of the government owing to non availability of the RTC will get title deeds shortly.
Karnataka Adivasi Hakkugala Samanvaya Samithi Secretary Jayakumar said that all the ULBs and gram panchayats have failed to utilise 22.75 per cent fund meant for the SC/STs effectively in Dakshina Kannada. The dalit families are not getting financial aid for the repair of houses, construction of toilets. The protest demanded correction of matters without delay.
Lingappa Nantoor, president of Dalit Rights Committee, secretary Prashant M B, Shahikala Tribe Rights Coordination Committee secretary Jayakumar and others participated in the protest.
The protesters raised slogans against the MCC and demanded that funds reserved for Dalits be used for their rightful purpose and ensure the welfare
of the Dalits.