Nedumaran for rehabilitating Satyamangalam STs

Tiruchirapalli, June 10 (UNI)

Rehabilitation of the tribals in the Satyamangalam forests is what merits priority than launching a search operation to nab brigand Veerappan, according to Tamil Nationalist Movement President P Nedumaran.

''The tribals have suffered a lot at the hands of the STF personnel in the past. Instead of letting loose an operation against Veerappan, both the Tamil Nadu and Karnataka governments should try to rehabilitate the scheduled tribes in the forest,'' he noted, talking to newspersons here today.

He claimed that the STF personnel belonging to Karnataka obtained a stay from Karnataka High Court against the continuation of Sadashiva Commission of Enquiry, probing alleged atrocities against the tribals, ''simply to conceal the fact.'' ''However, based on one of the conditions put forth by Veerappan to free (Kannada actor) Rajkumar, both Tamil Nadu and Karnataka governments vacated the stay against the commission and sanctioned Rs five crore each for providing compensation to the affected tribes. Immediately after his release, a stay was obtained once again against the continuation of commission,'' Mr Nedumaran claimed.

He wanted both the State governments to see that the stay against the Commission should be vacated and compensation amount disbursed to the affected people.

Mr Nedumaran maintained that Veerappan for the last two years had not indulged in any anti-social activities. ''He has already expressed his willingness for general amnesty. At this juncture, it will not be proper to appoint people like (Walter Issac) Dewaram, who was facing severe charges of police atrocities against innocent people, to head the STF searching Veerappan.'' Both the State governments should not treat the Veerappan issue as a law and order problem, instead consider it as a socio-economic matter of the tribals.

To a question, Mr Nedumaran said it was the duty of the new government to fulfil the previous government's ''commitments'' in reciprocation for getting Dr Rajkumar released from the clutches of the brigand.

Mr Nedumaran termed as ''unwarranted'' Chief Minister J Jayalalitha's plea to ban local extremist outfits like the TNLA and TNRT.

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Referred by: Mukundan CM
Published on: June 12, 2001
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