Kozhikode: Floods has pushed 17 Kattunayaka tribal families at Kolur off Muthanga in Wayanad to the fringes. Having no land, the people have been living on 25 cents of forest land since many decades in cramped dwellings in pitiable conditions. But the floods had made these homes uninhabitable. With no land and house, these people are staring at a bleak tomorrow.
“We were marooned during the floods when water flowed out of nearby rivulet and Kallur river. After the water receded, the water is still originating beneath the ground. A press on the floor inside our homes will bring water out,” laments Rajan of the Kolur colony.
Kattunayaka have been living on forest resources, cattle rearing and agriculture. Paddy cultivation is the main agrarian activity that too being done on nearby forest land. “Having no land we are unable to get homes under the ‘Life Mission’ scheme of the government. Authorities have no clear answer to our issues,” adds Rajan.
The plight of Kattunayaka came to the fore after a group of volunteers of ‘Janadyapathya Vedi’, a cultural organisation in Kozhikode, visited Muthanga for relief works. “They are in a hapless state. They need immediate rehabilitation to a place where they can connect to nature and their culture,” feels Priyesh Kumar P.K, Vedi convenor.
Muthanga ward member of Noolpuzha gram panchayat, Jaya M.K admits the issue. “The tribal department had approved a plan for constructing five homes in paddy fields. But village authorities had shown red signal due to the conservation of paddy land and wetland Act. We are waiting for the district administration’s intervention,” she said. Noolpuzha Tribal Extension Officer Shyni K.R. responded that she would look into the issue....