Committee formed for June 7 agitation

With their demand for better care and relief remaining elusive, a large number of victims of endosulfan from Dakshina Kannada have planned to stage a protest in front of the residence of Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on June 7.

Sridhar Gowda, an endosulfan victim and president of Endo Virodhi Horata Samiti, said the State government had failed to announce any relief package for 1,907 persons identified as people suffering disabilities following exposure to endosulfan in three taluks of the district.

“Even though we are not happy with the way enumeration of victims was carried out, the State government has not said anything about relief,” he said.

Grievances

Mr. Gowda said the number of beds in primary health centre in Kokkada has not been increased. Despite sanctioning of Rs. 3 crore, the project to build a hospital is hanging fire as land has not been allotted, he said.

Mr. Gowda, who is visually impaired, said so far 40 parents of bed-ridden endosulfan victims have come forward voluntarily to be a part of the protest before the Chief Minister’s house.

There is a plan to take as many as 200 people to Bangalore. “It’s very tough journey. But they want to do it as Chief Minister needs to know the plight we are going through,” Mr. Gowda said.

Mr. Gowda said Bangalore Chalo Sangatana Samiti has been formed to look into various aspects involved in taking the endosulfan victims to Bangalore. Four people will accompany each victim travelling to Bangalore.

Mr. Gowda said he was writing to Chief Minister and also the National Human Rights Commission about the purpose of the protest and seek necessary permission. “This is just to avoid any trouble for the victims in the name of human rights violation,” he said.

Mr. Gowda has been in the forefront of the fight for endosulfan victims along with activist Ravindranath Shanbhag.

Recently Mr. Gowda had prepared a video highlighting the condition of endosulfan victims and had provided copies to leaders of political parties.

He wanted the political parties to include the issue of rehabilitation in their manifesto.

Mr. Gowda had even carried out a post card campaign highlighting the plight of endosulfan victims.