Karnataka

Land Reforms Act amended to safeguard interests of mafia, says Hiremath

Social activist and leader of Janandolanagala Mahamaitri S.R. Hiremath addressing a media conference in Kalaburagi on Sunday.

Social activist and leader of Janandolanagala Mahamaitri S.R. Hiremath addressing a media conference in Kalaburagi on Sunday.

Training his guns at influential politicians and real estate giants who, according to him, have grabbed large tracts of land through illegal means, social activist and leader of Janandolanagala Mahamaitri, a large conglomerate of different organisations, S.R. Hiremath has said that the amendments to Karnataka Land Reforms Act 1961 are essentially meant for protecting the interests of the land maifa

“People like D.K. Shivakumar [Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee president], H.D. Kumaraswamy [Janata Dal (Secular) leader and former Chief Minister] and R. Ashok [Minister and BJP leader] have amassed large tracts of land through illegal means. Mr. Kumaraswamy has grabbed around 20 acres of land belonging to people of Scheduled Castes communities in Bidadi hobli in Ramanagaram district. The amendments made to Land Reforms Act are essentially meant for protecting such land-grabbers. The very purpose of the original Land Reforms Act, which was enacted to translate the land-to-tiller promise into a reality and helping the large sections of landless peasants to own pieces of agricultural land, is defeated by the present amendments. It is a criminal conspiracy that an elected government should not have indulged in,” Mr. Hiremath said at a press conference here on Sunday.

And, terming the amendments made to the APMC Act as an effort to turn the self-esteemed farmers into “slaves of corporate powers” and also, the newly enacted Karnataka Prevention of Slaughter and Preservation of Cattle Act as sounding a death knell to the farming community, Mr. Hiremath asserted that all those who had faith in the Constitution that ensured social justice, equality and liberty, are determined to continue their fight till the government withdraws the “anti-people” amendments and the Act.

“These three laws, two are amendments and the other, a new Act, are anti-people in general and anti-farmer in particular and the State Government should repeal them. Our other demand is for ensuring legal backing for Minimum Support Price (MSP) for farm produce. It is a demand that has been firmly raised by the farmers movement on the borders of the national capital. It is the demand that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had, when he was Chief Minister of Gujarat, put before the then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and later did not press for it when he became Prime Minister himself,” Mr. Hiremath said.

Mr. Hiremath announced that his conglomerate of people’s movements will shortly take up a State-wide campaign against the three laws, while seeking legal backing for Minimum Support Price for farm produce. It will conclude the campaign in Bengaluru during the Budget Session of the State Legislature in February 2022, he added.

“One jatha will start from Basavakalyan in Bidar and another from Male Mahadeswara Hill in Chamarajanagar district. Both will converge in Bengaluru and culminate during the Budget Session,” Mr. Hiremath clarified.


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Printable version | May 29, 2022 11:25:03 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/land-reforms-act-amended-to-safeguard-interests-of-mafia-says-hiremath/article38315057.ece