Over 100 Dalits Protest Against Village Leader - The New Indian Express

Over 100 Dalits Protest Against Village Leader

Published: 08th January 2014 07:45 AM

Last Updated: 08th January 2014 07:45 AM

Over 100 Dalit families living in SSK Maniyam area near Kosapet here, surrendered their ration cards to the District Collector, protesting against the harassment meted out to them by the village leader.

The families alleged that an advocate, who was the nattamai (the village leader), and his family had been harassing them for a long time and demanded action against them.

However, they took back their ration cards after Collector R Nanthagopal directed the Revenue Divisional Officer of Vellore to conduct an inquiry into the issue and take appropriate action.

A septuagenarian who is a resident of the area said they had been residing in SSK Maniyam area, which falls under ward 35 in Vellore Corporation, for more than three decades. 

In the last few years, the village leader Punniyakotti and his family had been harassing and abusing them.

“We have been facing several problems since we opposed the practice of having a nattamai. They are frequently picking up quarrels with us and threatening us when we oppose them,” a college student said in a statement.

A few days ago, Punniyakotti’s relative Baskar allegedly threatened three children of Meena, a Dalit, at knifepoint, as their parents had opposed them. 

However, the police hesitated to take stern action against Punniyakotti, alleged another youth.

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