The Belgaum District Kannada Organisations Action Committee held the successive State governments’ “weak boundary policy” responsible for the ‘hostility’ between Kannada and Marathi-speaking communities in Belgaum.
They urged Chief Minister Siddaramaiah to listen to the grievances of Kannadigas.
Addressing a press conference here on Tuesday, committee president Ashok Chandargi, the former mayor and veteran leader, Siddangouda Patil, and senior leader Raghavendra Joshi said successive State governments and district administration had been silent on the series of provocative speeches and abusive reports in a local Marathi daily for the past several years, wherein Kannadigas were referred to as “goondas” and the Karnataka government as anti-Marathi.
Yet, the district administration, which issued summons to several Kannada leaders under Section 107 of CrPC, had turned a blind eye.
Lack of support by the government had not helped strengthen Kannada and culture in Belgaum, and hence outsiders visiting the city did not feel that Belgaum was part of Karnataka, they said.
Regarding attacks by Kannada activists on Maharashtra Ekikaran Samithi leader Sambhaji Patil’s office on Monday and his room at the Legislators Home in Bangalore on Tuesday, the committee members attributed it to repeated provocations by the MES leaders.
Representatives of different factions of Karnataka Rakshana Vedike and other Kannada organisations were present.