Puttur: Feb 7, 2016: “If the State government fails to ensure kumki rights to farmers after the panchayat elections, I will lead a protest against the government,” warned Opposition leader in the Council K S Eshwarappa.
“If the government continues to neglect farmers, I will bring the burning issue on kumki rights to the notice of the State government during the forthcoming budget session from February 29,” said Eshwarappa.
He was addressing a convention of kumki land holders, organised by the district BJP unit on Saturday.
Eshwarappa said that there is no doubt that kumki land belongs to farmers. There are 4.13 lakh farmers in undivided Dakshina Kannada district. The government should not resort to injustice against farmers, he added.
He said the previous BJP government had decided to give five acres of kumki land free to the farmers and fixed a fee for additional kumki land. “The Cabinet, on January 19, 2013, had taken a decision to hand over kumki rights to the farmers. A gazette notification was also passed on February 13, 2013 in this regard. However, the Congress-led government has delayed the process of ensuring kumki rights to the farmers,” he alleged.
Eshwarappa said that the State government has delayed the process of regularising the encroached land under 94 C and 94CC of Karnataka Land Reforms Act.
MP Nalin Kumar Kateel accused the State government of conspiring to destroy farming community. Stating that kumki land adjacent to an agricultural land was essential for taking up sustained agricultural activity, the MP said no farmer can undertake an integrated agricultural practice in the absence of kumki land.
“It is important for farmers to have access and rights to kumki land – where they can allow their cattle to graze, collect leaves and other natural waste to produce compost for agriculture. If the officials visit houses to take back the kumki right bestowed on farmers, then inform us, we will come to your protection,” he told the people at the convention.
Member of Legislative Council Kota Srinivas Poojary said that the district administration should not create problem to the farmers based on a judgement of the Supreme Court.