BJP State president V. Muraleedharan said here on Tuesday that resumption of encroachments near Munnar led by Revenue Minister Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan was nothing but a publicity stunt.
“The government has failed to enforce the decision announced after the all-party meeting that all encroachers would be evicted. In the operations on Monday, not a single encroacher had been evicted and no unauthorised construction had been taken over by the government.”
The State president added that the government had not even demolished temporary constructions. All that the official team led by the Minister had done was to put up some boards saying that certain land belonged to the government. “This was some thing that a village officer could have done. There was no need for the Revenue Minister to go to Munnar to do that. Encroachers had removed similar boards put up by the previous government.”
Mr. Muraleedharan said that the Minister had not visited areas known for large scale encroachments. If the government was genuine about evictions, it was necessary to survey and identify the encroachments. What was happening now was a stage-show hatched by the official wing of the CPI (M) and the Congress leadership.
Demanding that the government should adopt a strong stand against encroachments, the State president said that he would be leading a party team to Kuttanad to check on reports about encroachments of backwaters. A debate was called for on the proposal to divert five per cent of plantations for tourism and other crops as it went against the spirit of land reforms.
Referring to allegations about the Karakonam Medical College collecting capitation fees, Mr. Muraleedharan said that the managers of the college should be arrested to prevent destruction of evidence. Collection of capitation fee was a criminal offence and enquiry was needed to find out whether other colleges under the self-financing medical collages association had also collected capitation fees.