'Withdraw notification on reclamation of land'

District Congress Committee President Ramanath Rai and the Sullia Block Congress President Venkappa Gowda have urged Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa to withdraw the notification on the reclamation of Kumki, Kaana, Baane land from the farmers who had right over it for ages.

Addressing a press meet here on Wednesday, Venkappa Gowda said the farmers were depending on the Kumki, Baane and Kaana land for their daily requirement of grass / leaves for cattle and other domestic needs. “Chief Minister is visiting Sullia to take part in the arecanut growers convention on April 16. As an alternative to arecanut growers’ convention which is being organised by the BJP, farmers who will be affected with the reclamation of Kumki, Baane and Kaana land will hold a ‘hakkothya programme’ near Sullia bus stand on April 16. If the police fail to give us permission to organise the programme, then we will display black flag to the Chief Minister,” he warned.

He said a report which was sent to the government by the officials said that 96,041 acre land has been encroached in Sullia taluk. This include Kumki, Kaana, Baane and the government land as well. The authorities have already issued notices to two to three farmers on the account of encroachment of the government land. If the government starts the process to reclaim Kumki, Baane and Kaana land, then about 15,000 to 20,000 farmers will lose their livelihood, he added. The land reclaimed will be handed over to Karnataka Public Lands Corporation Ltd.

Support price

Gowda said the support price for arecanut should be based on the current price of arecanut and not fixing the rate of arecanut at Rs 75. At present, arecanut costs Rs 108 per kg. So the support price should be announced for this rate. Last year, the State government had given Rs 5 crore to the CAMPCO as support price for arecanut. The Campco used the amount for purchasing the arecanut from the growers. Hence, the growers were not benefited from the support price.

He said the process of getting ID cards for availing support price should be simplified. It should be made available through all the cooperative societies.

Rai said if the support price is announced in the month of April and May, then it will benefit only the rich growers. The support price should be announced from December itself.

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