They had occupied land as part of the land agitation of the party

Revenue Minister Adoor Prakash said here on Tuesday that the protesters remaining on lands encroached during a land agitation of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) would be evicted.

The District Collectors and the District Police Chiefs had been asked to carry out the eviction.

After a meeting of seven District Collectors and other officials here on distribution of land to the landless, Mr. Prakash said: “The protesters had agreed to leave the land during talks to end the agitation. I had asked their leaders, including the former Speaker K. Radhakrishnan, to make them leave. If they stay put, the government can only see it as an action to torpedo its efforts to distribute land to the landless.”

To a query, he said the occupied land at many places was private property.

Land distribution

The Minister said the government would keep its promise of providing three cents of land each to one lakh landless people in the State by August 15.

“This will not be any disputed land, but tracts over which the government has full control and ownership,” he said.

Land distribution

He said the meeting here had discussed the distribution of land in Kasaragod, Kannur, Kozhikode, Palakkad, Idukki, Ernakulam and Alappuzha. The distribution in other districts would be discussed soon.

He said ownership claims had been raised over land identified for distribution in Kasaragod and a few other districts. The owners would be allowed one week to prove the claims.

“So far, 2,33,232 landless families have been identified in the State. The remaining persons have been given one more opportunity to submit applications for land before February 15. The government is planning to provide land to all the landless by 2015. The survey to divide land into plots for one-lakh landless people will be completed by March 15,” he said.

Thiruvananthapuram district had the largest number of landless — 39,636; Ernakulam had the second largest — 29,505.

The Minister said priority would be accorded to cancer patients in case of distribution of land to the landless.