Gives solatium of Rs.60,000 to each of the 26 affected families

Minister for School Education, Sports and Youth Welfare Vaigai Chelvan on Saturday distributed relief to the Dalit families, whose houses were demolished allegedly by the Sirukudi panchayat administration in Pappankulam on Independence Day.

After visiting the demolished houses and consoling the affected families, the Minister, who was accompanied by Collector V.Rajaraman, distributed welfare assistance to the tune of Rs.17.71 lakh to 56 people on behalf of various departments, an official release said. He distributed a solatium of Rs.60,000 to each of the 26 affected families on behalf of the Adi-Dravidar Welfare Department, 10 sewing machines worth Rs.35,000, dhoties and sarees, and notebooks to school students on behalf of other departments, the release said.

The district police had already arrested T. Amsavalli, president of Sirukudi Panchayat, and the JCB driver and remanded them in judicial custody. Thangaraj, husband of Amsavalli, is absconding.

The police also transferred Special Sub-Inspectors of Police attached to the SPICOT and Manamadurai police stations and a head constable in connection with the case. They had not been given new postings, the police said.

The district administration, on its part, placed under suspension the local Tahsildar and the Revenue Inspector on charges of dereliction of duty.