Letter from President of PUCL to ACP Panambur, Harassment to Mr.Roshan Lobo, Mooduperar under Bajpe jurisdiction and False complaint against him.

To                                                                                   28th October 2011

Mr. Puttamadaiah
ACP, Panambur
New Mangalore

Dear Mr. Puttamadaiah

Subject: Harassment to Mr.Roshan Lobo, Mooduperar under Bajpe jurisdiction and False complaint against him.

Roshan Lobo is not only our member but also a RTI activist who has filed several applications before the Paduperar panchayath to expose various corrupt practices since the year 2007. Enraged by this the Panchayath Chairman and members have regularly threatened Roshan Lobo of dire consequences if he does not stop this practice of resorting to RTI act against them.

Peter Lobo one of the panchayath members and immediate neighbor of Roshan has illegally trespassed into his compound and cut a huge tree and sold it to somebody on 25th of October 2011 when Roshan was away from the house. To cover his criminal act he has filed a false complaint at Bajpe Police station stating that, Roshan has assaulted him.

Kindly look into the matter and give necessary protection to Roshan Lobo, as the police at Bajpe appear to be favorable to Peter, because of his political influence.

Yours Sincerely

    (P.B D’Sa)

Yashoda Acquitted of Naxal Link Charge.

UDUPI: Yashoda, hailing from Mujhekhana of Kalasa, in Mudigere taluk, who was accused of having nexus with Naxalites was acquitted of her charges by the Udupi District and Sessions Judge here on Friday.

The police had arrested wounded Yashoda, in an encounter held at Idu, in Karkala taluk, on November 17, 2003.

The police headed by then SP Murugan had gunned down two Naxalites – Parvathi of Koppala and Hajima of Raichur in the courtyard of one Ramappa Poojary’s house in an encounter.

Apart from having participated in the Maoist movement, police had charged Yashoda of attempting to kill a policeman on duty and also booked her under the Arms Act. The court had as many as 40 witnesses and District and Session Judge Narendra Kumar Gunaki passed the acquittal order. Advocates M Shantharam Shetty from Udupi and B A Jagadish from Bangalore had argued on behalf of Yashoda.

Speaking to press persons, Yashoda said that she had full faith in the judiciary and she is happy to get acquitted. “I have been a member of the committee against National Park and on the day of the encounter I was returning after attending a meeting. Police shot at me and I was injured,” she said.

“I spent around Rs 1.50 lakh and my villagers bore most of the expenses voluntarily. Since the last eight years, I have been coming all the way to Udupi to attend the court proceedings several times. Now that I have won my personal legal battle, I will now fight against the government attempts to evacuate 43 families in my village, she added.

Since a year she has been the president of Hobali level Aranya Hakku Samithi, formed under Forest Act to take up survey of forests.

News Source: IBN Live

KGF incident: PUCL seeks Kolar official’s apology

The People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) has demanded an apology from the Deputy Commissioner of Kolar for alleging that there was a “conspiracy” by the rights group to defame the district administration.

Deputy Commissioner Manoj Kumar Meena had alleged that PUCL had played a role in the deaths of three persons performing the work of manual scavenging in Kolar Gold Fields (KGF) on October 24 to tarnish the administration’s image.

Ramdas Rao and Y.J. Rajendra of PUCL said in a release that the Deputy Commissioner’s statement is “nothing other than a cynical attempt to pass the buck for the comprehensive failure of the district administration to abolish manual scavenging, which is the most heinous expression of untouchability.” They said that the “casual and baseless” charges were not only defamatory to PUCL, but amount to “a show of contempt and disrespect towards the deceased persons.”

They said that the State had failed to fulfil its Constitutional mandate and was responsible for the continuing tragic deaths of Dalits while cleaning soak pits and manholes.

“The most cynical part of the Deputy Commissioner’s statement is to insinuate that the PUCL actually engineered this incident to record and use it to tarnish the image of the district administration,” said the statement.

PUCL said that the organisation has been involved in the public campaign against the practice of manual scavenging across Karnataka, and specifically in KGF. In 2009, the PUCL had filed a Public Interest Litigation before the Karnataka High Court on this.

The PUCL’s intervention had resulted in the State Human Rights Commission recognising the existence of the problem and directing district administration to take full-fledged rehabilitation measures, the release said.

“The so-called rehabilitation measures undertaken by the district administration are not only grossly inadequate but are in fact responsible for driving the three workers to their deaths,” the PUCL has said.

News Source: The Hindu

Death of pourakarmikas: man held

The Robertsonpet police at Kolar Gold Fields (KGF) have arrested Anandaraj, the owner of the house in Ashoknagar where three pourakarmikas died on October 24 while cleaning a soak pit.

The police registered a case against the Commissioner and the Health Inspector of Robertsonpet City Municipal Council (CMC) on charge of dereliction of duty which allegedly caused the death of three pourakarmikas.

Nagendrababu (26), Ravi (29) and Prasad Kutty (35) were killed of asphyxiation while cleaning a soak pit at Anandaraj’s house.

Seven workers were reportedly engaged by Anandaraj for cleaning the pit for a sum of Rs. 5,000.

Following a complaint lodged by Arun, the brother of Prasad Kutty, one of the victims, against Anandaraj and his son Sunil, the police have arrested Anandaraj. In his complaint, Mr. Arun alleged that the workers were forced to enter the soak pit for cleaning it in spite of their refusal to do the work for safety reasons. Cases were registered against Dalit leaders A.P.L. Ranganath, Sulikunte Ramesh, Narasimha, Manikyam, Safai Karmacharis Struggle Committee leader Padma for agitating in demand of more compensation to the families of the deceased. KGF MLA Y. Sampangi on Tuesday distributed cheques of Rs. one lakh each to the families of the deceased persons. Bangarpet tahsildar S.M. Mangala and Assistant Commissioner R.S. Peddappaiah distributed cheques of Rs. one lakh each to families of victims from B.R. Ambedkar Development Corporation, and Rs. 10,000 each from the taluk administration.

News Source: The Hindu

Court frees ‘naxal’ Yashodha..

In a historical verdict, Udupi District and Sessions Court Judge Narendra Kumar Gunaki today declared that the naxal convict Yoshodha is innocent and charges against her are unfound.

             The verdict came after the long legal battle that went up to eight years following the insufficient evidences produced by the Public Prosecutor to prove the charges against Yashodha.

It can be recalled that in the naxal encounter in the year 2003 that took place in the house of Rama Poojary of Bollattu in Idu village, the police team led by the then SP Murugan were able to nab Yashodha.

The encounter took place during the wee hours on November 17, 2003. In the encounter, two naxalites Parvathi and Hazima were killed and two others Vishnu and Anand went absconding. In the process, two police personnel Manohar and Ashok were seriously injured. Yashodha also suffered injuries in the incident and was admitted in KMC Manipal and a charge sheet was filed against her.

Yashodha hails from Kalasa village of Mudigere taluk. She was produced before court and she was remanded to judicial custody for nearly 3 months and 20 days. However, she was able to come out on bail.
Yashodha’s case was fought by advocate M Shantharam Shetty from Udupi and B N Jagdeesh from Bangalore. Shetty informed media persons that in the time span of 8 years, as many as 40 witnesses including SP Murugan and DCIB Police Inspector Ashokan were prosecuted by the court as witnesses. Public Prosecutor is not able to prove the charges against her that was mentioned in the charge sheet, he added.

The three charges against her include that she was the active member of banned CPM (Maoist) organisation, she had illegal weapons in her custody and she attempted to murder police personnel in the fight thereby obstructing them to perform their duties.
These three charges had no substantive proofs wherein the District Court had come to a conclusion that the charges are far from reality.

Shetty said he argued the case based on the fact that Yashodha was the member of Kudremukh National Park Veerodhi Horata Okkutta and she was in the house of Rama Poojary that night to attend the meeting of the Okkutta. She missed the bus and stayed in the house of Rama Poojary, when the naxal encounter took place. She has no connections with naxals, he added.

Yashodha expressed her happiness by telling that the verdict proves the victory of justice.

I was always a social activist. However, I was wrongly labeled as naxal activist, she said and added “I knew justice will come out in favor of me and I am proved innocent after 8 years of struggle.”

She has plans to fight for the poor people in her village who are being displaced by the forest department.

As many as 43 houses in her village are ruined by the Forest Department and she wants to take up the cause. Yashodha had once contested for Gram Panchayat polls in the year 2002 as BJP and JD(S) coalition candidate. Besides, the verdict has added strength to the dreams of Yashodha, who wants to be termed as social activist as she is now unchained from the charges of naxal activist.

Source: Deccan Herald