Report and pics by Michael Rodrigues
Udupi: Rajatadri, the new DC office complex in Manipal, is
barely 5 kms away from Udupi. The chairman of the State Human Rights Commission
had come all the way from Bangalore to received grievances from the public. All
he got were six complaints.
Lodging a complaint against human right violation entails spending hundreds
of rupees to come to Manipal. There is no bus service to the DC's office.
In reality, this alone is the main grievance. 'Nadoja' Dr S R Nayak heard the
Just like the earlier occasion, this time too complaints regarding UPCL were
submitted. Yellur panchayat's former president Shashidhar Shetty, in his
complaint, explained the water in the wells surrounding UPCL were being
contaminated over the past two years and how it had turned salty.
People using water from those wells have developed complaints like asthma,
cough and skin ailments. Many animals too had died. Children cannot be bathed in
this water. All complaints submitted to zilla panchayat and government
departments have borne no fruit, he stated. In response, Nayak asked the reports
to be submitted through the CEO of zilla panchayat within a week.
Owing to the functioning of UPCL, traditional fishing too had suffered.
Out of the 360 families dependent on traditional fishing, even 302 people
found it difficult to subsist on the trade. It was announced at DCs' meet in
2010 that the company had been ordered to provide relief for this. Since nothing
had been done yet, the complaint submitted under the leadership of Bharat Kumar
the complaint was accepted.
Reacting to this, DC and his team said it was difficult to find a solution to
this. But since it had been ordered, the DC said that suitable measures
would be taken in this matter. Richard Lewis of Padu Tonse Kemmannu complained
that he had once given up land to the panchayat for road-making. Now again the
panchayat had been demanding land to build a bridge. He felt that unfair demands
were being made and he was being harassed.
Rafiq belonging to
Balkudru Hangarkatte complained that although he had procured permission
from CRZ authorities to build a house and obtained a 'No Objection
Certificate' for electricity connection, the Airody gram panchayat was giving
him unnecessary trouble.
Advocate Sadashiva K Amin said that they had appealed to the court in 2007
complaining of unfair policy in the appointment of district Home Guards.
The court had referred the matter to the IGP, and later to the DGP also, but he
had not given any justice, he said.
Some fishermen complained that many children of fishermen are getting denied
of their education. They complained that some officers insist on certain
records to be produced of the children.
Reacting to this Dr Nayak declared that children between 6-14 in the state
were eligible for compulsory education, and they should not be denied of their
education. He asked the CEO of ZP to take necessary action about it.
Later speaking to the media, Dr Nayak, giving details of the complaints
issued by him hitherto, said that ever since he took office in October 2007,
until March 2012, as many as 33,064 human rights violation cases from all over
the state got registered with him.
The Human Right Commission registering 6065 instances independently
from whatever was published in the newspapers, depending on the merits of the
case. He said that by March 2012, 579 cases were registered. Out of them
363 cases have been resolved, and 216 cases are pending, he said. Of the
1588 cases getting registered from Dakshina Kannada, 952 cases have been
resolved and 536 cases need to be resolved, he said.
In addition to this, he suggested measures be taken for rain harvesting,
keeping in view the district facing drinking water shortage. He gave
suggestions to the Udupi municipality to put the project into priority
action. There have been complaints about the non-introduction of bus
service to the DC office. Not providing it by itself is a violation of human
rights. The mediapersons insisted that early steps be taken in this regard.
Another complaint was about the trucks carrying fish spilling dirty water along
the route, which caused road mishaps resulting in loss of lives. Dr Nayak
directed the police to take action against such practice.
DC and additional DC were away on official work concerning MLC elections.
Zilla panchayat Chief executive officer S A Prabhakar Sharma, Kundapur assistant
commissioner Sadashiva Prabhu and additional SP Venkateshappa were present on