Mangaluru: The tribal villages of Kudremukh National Park are crying for basic amenities, said Shekhar Laila, state committee member of Karnataka Adivasi Hakkugala Samanvaya Samithi.
When the UPA governemnt passed the Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act in 2006, villagers and activists were happy that the law could protect the interests of forest dwellers by providing them basic amenities.
But they allege that the issues faced by them still remains unaddressed even after 15 years.
“The Act was passed when UPA-1 government was in power and still now forest dwellers are running from pillar to post for amenities like proper roads and electricity. The situation is very bad,” Shekhar Laila told Deccan Chronicle.
Shekhar added that in the nine Panchayats of Dakshina Kannada district, there are about 300 Malekudiya tribal families living inside the Kudremukh National Park forest limits.
“The Act states that the Union government shall provide consent for diversion of forest land for other purposes if felling of trees is not exceeding 75 trees per hectare. The Act clearly mentions which are the 13 facilities including roads, electricity, schools, dispensaries, schools, and drinking water. IPpeople have been demanding roads and electricity for long years. Except nine houses, all applications submitted for electricity connection are pending,” he said.
“People have approached every officer and tried every possible way to get their grievance addressed. But, even the elected representatives have failed to help the people,” he added....