BELAGAVI: While Kannadigas residing in Goa have been demanding a piece of land to construct ‘Kannada Bhavan’ there, Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant on Monday said that they should buy the required land on their own instead of requesting his government for land.
Sawant’s statement has upset Kannada leaders in both Goa and Karnataka as several of them from the coastal state had assured Kannadigas in Goa on several occasions in the past of helping them get land allotted by Goa government for Kannada Bhavan.
Speaking at a cultural conference organised by Akhil Goa Kannada Sangha in Bicholim, Goa, on Sunday, Sawant said that his Karnataka counterpart Basavaraj Bommai talks to him on several issues related to Kannadigas in Goa. Bommai wants a Kannada Bhavan in Goa but there is shortage of land for this purpose. He said, “Kanandigas could construct a Kananda Bhavan in Goa by purchasing land on their own.”
According to sources, senior BJP leader C T Ravi had assured Kannadigas in Goa that the Goa government would allot a suitable land for setting up of a Kannada Bhavan but measures were not taken to do so. Earlier, the Karnataka government had written to Sawant demanding the release of 1-2 acres for Kannada Bhavan in Goa. Kannadigas residing in Goa were demanding a Bhavan for almost four decades, sources said.
Bommai had also set aside Rs 10 crore in the state budget for Kannada Bhavan in Goa.
According to working president of Akhil Bharatiya Goa Kannada Sangh, Siddanna Meti, Sawant had stated in a programme earlier that his government would allot a suitable land for Kannada Bhavan in Goa and now has backtracked. “CT Ravi had told prior to the Goa Assembly election that he would get land allotted for Bhavan in Goa. And now he asks whether he has a magic wand when he was asked about his assurance,’’ alleged Meti.
Kannada leaders in Goa hit out at politicians of Karnataka for not taking the issue seriously and said the issue was being politicised. They demanded that the Karnataka government hold talks with the Goa government and get the land allotted.