CNC to stage satyagraha on March 21

Staff Correspondent

It will coincide with World Racial Discrimination Eradication Day

CNC to organise seminars in New Delhi on April 6 and 7 to highlight the problems of Kodavas Autonomy for Kodagu demanded

Madikeri: The Codava National Council (CNC), which has been demanding autonomous homeland status to Kodavas in Kodagu district, will observe a satyagraha in front of the office of the Deputy Commissioner here on March 21, to protest against the alleged discriminatory attitude of the State Government towards Kodavas.

The day will coincide with World Racial Discrimination Eradication Day, N.U. Nachappa, secretary-general of the CNC, told presspersons here on Saturday.

The satyagraha will symbolise fight of every race and religion to demand equal status to them in all walks of life. Kodavas should have been assimilated into the mainstream by the Karnataka Government. Unfortunately, it has not happened since Kodagu's merger with it, Mr. Nachappa said.

The report by Sitaram Mahapatra committee will deny the entry of the Kodava language into the VIII Schedule of the Constitution, recommendations of the Nanjundappa Commission had hindered the development of Kodagu and so are the moves of the Delimitation Commission headed by Justice Kuldip Singh, he alleged. The CNC will organise seminars in New Delhi on April 6 and 7 to highlight its cause, he added.

Census forms mention Kodavas as either Hindus or Kannadigas. This will obliterate the Kodava community from the State. The previous National Democratic Alliance Government had included Dogri, Mythili, Santhali and Bodo in the VIII Schedule of the Constitution through the 100th amendment. Due to lack of political will and commitment, the Kodava language was left out, he said.

The United Nations had made it clear that minorities should be given all care and protection by the majority people living in a specific geographical area. In case of Kodavas, it has not happened, Mr. Nachappa said.

He demanded that the Constitutional guarantee provided to the clans in the northeastern States according to Article 371 and Schedule 5 and 6 of the Constitution should be extended to the Kodavas. Buddhists of Ladakh, Bodos in Assam and Gorkhas in West Bengal have been give autonomy. The same benefits should be extended to the Kodavas, Mr. Nachappa said.