KOCHI: The Ernakulam district administration has initiated steps to defuse the tension prevailing at the Bhajanmathom Temple in Choondy near Puthe-ncruz following a group of Dalits launching an indefinite relay hunger strike over the past four days. The district collector Mohammad Saffirulla has assured representatives of Bhu Avakasha Samara Munnani (Land Rights Front) to look into their concerns when they met him the other day. The DySP of Muvat-tupuzzha also visited the site of the hunger strike to collect basic information regarding the agitation. Meanwhile, the leaders of the Land Rights Front have decided to meet revenue and SC&ST ministers, SC&ST Commission and chief secretary in this regard.
The relay hunger strike was launched four days ago demanding withdrawal of cases against the activists involved in demolition of the compound wall erected by the temple management committee on encroached land, preventing the right of way for Dalits residing in four settlements in the nearby areas. Cancellation of the title deed given to the NSS unit secretary for revenue land, implementation of demands passed by the grama sabha and bringing the open space of the Bhajanamadhom into a common property are the other major demands raised by the agitators. They have also demanded a probe against the revenue official who has given permission for the compound wall.