Addressing presspersons, Bhanuchandra Krishnapura, Convenor of the Committee, alleged that after the present Deputy Commissioner N.S. Channappa Gowda took charge, all allocations of DC Manna land had been stopped.

The Dakshina Kannada district administration has stopped all distribution of the Depressed Classes (DC) Manna land which are meant to be allotted to the socio-economic backward, said the district Dalit Land Rights Struggle Committee here on Wednesday.

Addressing presspersons, Bhanuchandra Krishnapura, Convenor of the Committee, alleged that after the present Deputy Commissioner N.S. Channappa Gowda took charge, all allocations of DC Manna land had been stopped.

“Before this, out of 7,551.16 acres of DC Manna Land, 5,794.87 acres had been distributed to those classified under Schedule Caste and Schedule Tribe category. However, after the Deputy Commissioner took over, all of this has been stopped and he has claimed that there was no law dictating the allocation of land,” he said.

In a letter written by the Deputy Commissioner to the State Revenue Department, and reproduced by the Committee, Mr. Gowda asked for a clarification in the definition of “Depressed Classes” as listed by the Madras Board Standing Order (1878), and the Karnataka Land Revenue Act 1964.

“In all other districts the DCs are allotting land. Only in Dakshina Kannada the DC is denying backward classes their entitled land. We see an ulterior motive here,” said Mr. Krishnapura.

The Committee alleged that the remaining land was given to private enterprises, ashrams and maths, or was encroached with the connivance of government officials.

However, maintaining that the letter was just a clarification and not an order to stop the distribution of DC Manna land, Mr. Gowda said: “I had written to the department asking them what to do with the left over DC Manna land as the Land Revenue Act does not have the required guidance to help us distribute the land. While, a part of it was sanctioned by the State Government itself, many of these have also seen encroachments. To either give out these lands, or clear out encroachments, we need the Revenue Department’s guidance,” he said.

He added that depending on the decision taken by the Revenue Department, the land would be allotted or used for some other public purpose.

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