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No move to evict Tamils, says PUCL

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Members of political parties staging a protest in Coimbatore on Saturday against the Kerala government's ‘move’ to relocate Tamils at Attappady in Palakkad.— PHOTO: J. MANOHARAN
Members of political parties staging a protest in Coimbatore on Saturday against the Kerala government's ‘move’ to relocate Tamils at Attappady in Palakkad.— PHOTO: J. MANOHARAN

: The Tamil Nadu and Puducherry units of the People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) on Saturday rejected the allegation by political parties that there was a move to evict Tamils from Attappady in Palakkad district and said the issue was mainly to restore the land to the tribespeople in the area.

The issue of eviction notice to non-tribespeople was mischievously interpreted as “anti-Tamil,”, in reality, it was to restore the illegally occupied land to the Adivasis in Attappady, S. Balamurugan, general secretary, PUCL-Tamil Nadu and Puducherry, told reporters here.

Quoting reports after a PUCL delegation visited the area, Mr. Balamurugan said their field inquiry had revealed that of 167 orders passed since 1987, no appeals had been filed in 52 cases and 77 non-tribal persons in these 52 cases had now been issued notice, of whom 19 were Tamils and 58 Malayalis.

Of them, 13, belonging to both Tamil and Malayalam speaking people, had suo moto handed over their land to the Adivasis concerned, he said.

Another major finding was that since mid-2012 to mid-2013, as many as 54 Adivasi children died owing to severe malnutrition in Attappady. An Attappady package had been announced by Kerala and land restoration given priority, based on which notices had been issued once again to the non-tribeal people who illegally occupied Adivasi land, Mr. Balamurugan said.

The issue was not against Tamils living there, but made out to be as one by the land mafia, real estate tycoons, and also some political parties in Tamil Nadu, he said. — PTI


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