Tribals walk 1.5 km to burial ground as road encroached
Speaking to TNIE, K Kaliappan, a resident said, “There existed a small pathway that has been used by our villagers for as long as we can remember.
DHARMAPURI: Residents of Nongampatti in Pattukonampatti panchayat are forced to walk nearly 1.5 km, carrying the dead bodies of their kin, for the past two years as the path to the burial ground is allegedly encroached upon. They urged the Dhrampuri administration to take steps to resolve the issue.
Speaking to TNIE, K Kaliappan, a resident said, “There existed a small pathway that has been used by our villagers for as long as we can remember. Two years ago, the pathway was even renovated and extended to allow vehicles to move through. But last year, a private individual encroached on the land and began cultivating. Now we have to carry our dead and walk through the farmlands. So, we urge the administration to pave a new path for us.”
Tamil Nadu Malaival Makkal Sangam president Ambrose said, “Caste Hindus are backing the encroacher and have been obstructing the tribal people from using this path. Petitions were filed nearly four times and a peace meeting was held between both parties in the presence of revenue officials. But no efforts have been provided to recover the encroachment and allocate a path.”
“On Tuesday, an 87-year-old woman died in the village and people had to carry her through farmlands and uneven terrain. So, we urge the revenue department to allocate a pathway for their burial ground,” he added. Revenue officials in Harur told TNIE, “We are aware of the issue and have been working to resolve it. We will check government records and take steps to provide a pathway for the tribal people.”