Denied basic facilities, Banjarumale residents to boycott elections

Denied basic facilities, Banjarumale residents to boycott elections

Residents of Banjarumale (a tribal hamlet) at Neriya gram panchayat in Belthangady taluk are planning to boycott the upcoming Assembly election as they have been denied basic facilities even after 70 years of Independence.

Over 30 families belonging to Malekudiya community reside in Banjarumale. They have to travel 20 km to reach the main road. The only road to the village is through the Charmadi Ghat as they need to take a diversion at the 9th curve of Charmadi Ghat (about 30 kms Belthangady or 9 kms from Kakkinje) and travel for 9 kms in the dense forest to reach Banjarumale. As the road to Banjarumale passes through a private estate, the government has not taken any interest in developing the road.

Further, the residents have not seen electricity so far. Even telephones are a distant dream for the residents.

Residents have been eking out a living by farming. In spite of repeated appeals, no efforts have been made by the authorities to solve the problems. Road, electricity and other basic facilities are still a mirage for the residents.

The residents said that till they get a solution to the problems, they will boycott the election. "All the political parties promise to provide basic facilities during the election but forget their promise after coming to power," residents said. "We have submitted several representations in the past. We are only demanding our rights. We will not exercise our franchise till our demands are fulfilled," they said.

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