Andhra Pradesh Civil Liberties Committee fact-finding panel visits thandas

The fact-finding committee of the Andhra Pradesh Civil Liberties Committee (APCLC) has alleged that both Congress and Telugu Desam Party activists were involved in brewing and sale of liquor in thandas at Mylavaram and the activity is still going on in the tribal hamlets even after the hooch tragedy.

The committee, which visited the Poratanagar thanda, Naguluru, and Kanimerla thandas on Monday, said that women and some youth urged the Excise and Police Department officials to take measures to prevent manufacturing and sale of arrack in the villages.

But, the officials have not responded to the plea and the ID liquor manufacturers continued the illegal trade with the support of some political leaders, which claimed the lives of 19 persons, the committee observed.

With liquor and belt shop owners selling IML at higher price, the tribals procured the country-made liquor at cheaper rates and consumed it. As the tribals have no work and lands to plough, the villagers are facing severe poverty and even some Lambadas who had lands have not possessed any ownership documents.

The fact-finding committee submitted a report to the State committee on its observations, said the APCLC State secretary Chiluka Chandrashekar and Krishna district secretary Rayala Sridhar.

The committee asked the government to impose ban on liquor in State, provide job for one person to the bereaved families, five acres of land and issue pattas to the tribals who were doing agriculture in the thandas.