Kallupatti is 3 km from Marungapuri on Madurai highway

A large number of residents of Marungapuri observed a day-long fast demanding that the taluk office be located in the village and in protest against the move to locate the office in neighbouring Kallupatti. Shopkeepers in the village downed shutters in support of the demand.

The State government has recently ordered the bifurcation of the Tiruchi and Manapparai taluks in the district, taking the number of taluks in the district from 9 to 11.

While Tiruchi has been bifurcated into Tiruchi East and Tiruchi West taluks, Manapparai has been bifurcated into Manapparai and Marungapuri taluks.

While Marungapuri residents are happy over the creation of the new taluk, they are sore that the taluk headquarters office is sought to be located at Kallupatti, a distance of about 3 km on the Madurai Highway.

The residents have petitioned the district administration pressing for the location of the taluk headquarters office in Marungapuri.

On Thursday, representatives of all political parties and residents observed a fast. “It has become a practice for the officials to locate all government offices, with headquarters as Marungapuri, at Kallupatti, and other villages. Already the panchayat union office, the Education Department and Tangedco offices are located at Kallupatti.

We want the taluk office to be located in Marungapuri, which has a population of about 5,000, so that the residents could have easy access,” R. Tamizhazhagan, a local representative of the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam.

Locals say they have identified a two-acre site for locating the taluk office and are prepared to acquire it through public contributions from the people of the village. The people of the village accused the officials of acting unilaterally without respecting the sentiments of the people. They sent representations by facsimile to the government pressing the demand.

The people of the village said they had planned to intensify their agitation if the officials did not heed their plea. “We have planned to surrender our ration cards and electoral photo identity cards next week. If our demand is not conceded still, we will go on an indefinite fast,” Mr. Tamizhazhagan said.