Claiming that a “building mafia” was trying to encroach on the land owned by a Dalit family in Kadri here and “decades-old” religious paraphernalia from their property, numerous Dalit groups urged the district administration to conduct a survey and act against the builder.

Karnataka Dalit Sangharsha Samiti (KSSS) district convenor Keshav Puttur said the land was contentious as the family of Umanath Karkera has been staying there for decades.

“Mr. Karkera’s father and grandfather have been residing in the same place, by paying a lease on the land. Under the Land Reforms Act, they had applied for conversion of land to their names. But, only 41 cents of land was transferred to them,” he said.

The organisations claimed that apart from the house the family resides in, the builder has levelled the entire site – taking down a small plantation of areca and coconut trees – and the ‘daiva gudi’ (a shrine) that was worshipped by Dalit families in the area.

More In: Mangaluru