Shivamogga DC writes to Rwandan embassy over 'arrest' of tribals

 Deputy Commissioner M Lokesh has written to the Rwandan embassy to take suitable steps for the release of 11 members of Shivamogga’s Hakki-Pikki tribal community believed to have been arrested in the central African nation.

Sandeepa, Sunanda, Sandesh, Jagannath, Lathi, Raja, Kajol, Lachcha, Meghana, Badal and Ranjana, from Sadashivapura village, Shivamogga taluk, left for Rwanda on September 12 to sell herbal medicines.

It is said they had the visa, passport and other necessary travel documents. Ranjana, a member of the team, sent a message on WhatsApp to the villagers that they were arrested last week, said Nasik Babu, a leader of the tribal community.

Some Hakki-Pakki families have been visiting African countries for the past several years to sell herbal medicines, a community leader and suspected that they were arrested because they didn’t have a valid business licence. Just four months ago, some members of the community were arrested in South Africa but were released after a week.

‘No communication’

The deputy commissioner pointed out in the letter that there had been no official communication about the arrest.

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