Udupi, Mar 21, 2015: Briefing reporters, Karnataka Dalit Sangharsha Samiti State coordinator Sunder Master alleged that the Udupi DC is making false assurances and has failed to make arrangements. The Samiti demanded that the Dalits should be granted permission for the cremation of dead bodies in 1.56 acre of land earmarked for the purpose in the Bada Yermal gram panchayath area.
He also said initially the cremation ground was used by all communities except for Dalits. Later the ground was taken over by one-community, who never allowed any other community to cremate the dead. However, the said community has now stopped cremating bodies in the past two years. Even after the taluk administration had put a notice that it is the cremation ground, the notice was removed by the community.
He said there is no place to perform the funeral in Bada Yermal gram panchayath area and the bodies should be taken to distant places like Padubidri for cremation. He alleged that the officials are now citing the reason of school in the surrounding premises. However, the school was built after the land was earmarked as the cremation ground.
He threatened that if the district administration fails to sanction the permission for the cremation land and take up construction works by April 14, the Samiti would be hold massive protest. The district administration has no right to celebrate Ambedkar Jayanti. He said as many as Rs 10 lakh rupees is released for the cremation ground. The district administration has not taken up any construction works. He questioned the inability of the district administration to take up the works.
Ridiculing the Pejawar mutt seer for his fake concern on Dalits, Master said that Pejawar seer is holding ’fashion show’ in Dalit colony. He should now answer as to why the Dalits are forbidden from cremating the bodies in the land. They have to make arrangements nearby railway track. He added that despite several meetings held with the district in charge minister, MLA, DC and SP, the Dalits are not assured with any sort of justice, he said. The Bada Yermal gram panchayath president Vasanth Shetty also demanded justice and promised action.