Land Struggle in Vidyutsadasivapuram
Land is the principal source of livelihood, social esteem and recognition in the rural areas. Land continues to be the source of economic and political power. Ownership of land has been the principal instrument through which dominant groups have perpetuated their control over the dalits and weaker sections through history. Acquisition of land by all means and methods has been the chief characteristic of the dominant groups, particularly after Independence. In fact, Indian History is replete with innumerable cases of agricultural land belonging to the state being acquired and grabbed by the dominant groups, using their socio-economic power, political clout, legal loop holes, bureaucratic corruption, expensive legal system and judicial delays. Despite the progressive land reform policy of the government, vast tracts of surplus land, which ought to have been distributed among the land less poor, has been grabbed and enjoyed by the dominant groups in the society. What is more, there are several instances of these dominant groups dispossessing the land under the enjoyment of the poor masses. As a result the distribution of the principal source of income and employment for the rural people has become highly regressive and iniquitous, exacerbating the social inequalities and tensions. The Vidyuthsadasivapurma project narrated below, is a classic example of how the deeply entrenched dominant groups without any legal claim to the land, use every illegal means to dispossess the poor of the land, which rightfully and justifiably belongs to them. It is also a shining example of how the poor, when motivated and organized, could resist the multi-pronged attack of the vested interests and take the land struggle to its logical conclusion. The land struggle is a live example of how powerful vested interests can prevent allotment of government land to the eligible poor for decades and thus depriving the basic human rights of the poor, not withstanding the efforts of some empathetic government officials.
Brief History of the Land.
At the dawn of Indian Independence, the Zamindards and Inamdars held permanently settled estates. The Zamindars kept a large part of the estate in their own hands, leaving the rest to be held by the peasants. In return the peasants paid rents to the Zamindars. After Independence the government decided to confer titles on peasants for the land cultivated by them, doing away the intermediary Zamindars. Besides, the government abolished and took over the estates held by the Zamindars by the Estate Abolition Act 1948. Thus, the peasant cultivators were given the titles to the land under their cultivation (Section 11A of Estate Abolition Act), while the estates directly held by the Zamindars were taken over by the government.
Therefore, this well-intentioned section has been, time and again, misused by land-grabbers by preparing false records with the help of petty land officials. This kind of land-grabbing has considerably frustrated the government’s policy to distribute surplus land tot he
landless. This land struggle is typical example of the above facts.
Vidyustsadasivapuram village in Puttur Revenue Mandal is an un-inhabitated village. The lands in this village were forestlands included in Narayanavanam forest block of Puttur Revenue mandal. The village was originally notified as “Under Tenure Estate” and was taken over by the Government on 3-9-1952 under the provisions of the Estate Abolition Act, 1948. On a suit in OS No. 15/58 filed by the so called landholders V. Narasimha Chari and another, the Additional District Judge, Chittoor, in OS No. 15/58 dated
31-12-1958 decreed the suit against the Government stating that the village Vidyutsadasivapuram was not an under tenue estate. The Additional District Judge restrained the Government by a permanent injunction from interfering with the village.
Aggrieved by the decree and judgement passed by the Additional District Judge, Chittoor, in OS No. 15/58 dated 31.12.1958, an appeal was filed before the High Court of Andhra Pradesh, Hyderabad on behalf of the Government. The High Court of Andhra Pradesh, Hyderabad in its judgement in AS No. 415/59 dated 4-12-1962 while upholding the decree and judgement of the Additional district Judge, Chittor, held that Vidyutsadasivapuram village formed part of Karvetinagaram Zamin Estate, that Narayanavanam Estate in which the village was included, was registered separately in Collector’s office as a permanently settled estate and that the village became part and parcel of the main estate of Narayanavanam which lies in Karvetinagaram Zamindari. After careful consideration of the entire matter, the Government in G.O. Ms. No. 796 Revenue dated 10-8-1967, issued an amendment to the original notification with retrospective effect from 15-08-1950 was published in the A.P. Gazette dated 31-8-1967. This notification has not been challenged by the so-called landholders. The entire area was forest as on 15-8-1950. There were no ryoti lands in the village. Thus Vidyutsasasivapuram village came to be vested in Government with effect from 15-8-1950. Sri V. Narasimhachari, the so called land holder applied to the A.S.O., Chittoor in the year 1952 for grant of ryotwari patta in respect of the entire estate U/s.15(1) of the E.A. Act 1948, contending that it was a pre-settlement minor Inam. The estate manager (Tahsildar) filed an objectiion statement on 9-4-1952 stating that the entire village was forest area used for communal purpose and that there were no cultivable lands. During the enquiry the Karnam of the village stated that village was forest and that there were no cultivable lands. During the enquiry the Karnam of the village stated that the village was forest and that no revenue accounts such as dangles, etc., were maintained for the land. The A.S.O., Chittoor, in his order SR No. 74/ur/53 dated 29-04-1954 rejected the claim of the so called land holders as the entire area was forest but used for communal purpose only.
The Poor Claim the Government Land at Vidyutsadasivapurm
After coming to know that the entire Vidyutsadasivapuram lands were government lands, some of the landless poor Dalits of AM village had no livelihood had occupied the lands to the knowledge of the Revenue authorities. In early 1970, the Dalits of AM Puram, had applied for allotment of the reclaimed lands to them. The Revenue authorities surveyed the lands and were considering the grant of titles to the landless Dalits.
Professional Land Grabbers Enter the Scene:
Lured by the potential value of the virgin land at Viyutsadasivapurm, one Mr. K. Godinds Swamy of Mugamakula Kothur village of Nagari Mandal and Sri P. Krishnama Raju of T. Kandriga village of Vadamalpet mandal, along with the so called unsuccessful land holders had fabricated inter alia, the following documents, in collusion with the then Tahasildar, Puttur, Mr. D. V. Naidu, for the purpose of acquiring the rights on the lands of Vidyutsadasivapuram under Section11(A) of the Estate Abolition Act. 1948.
M. P. – 10 Vadamabadika for F. 1346
No. 10 Chitta for F. 1348
No. 2 Adangal for F. 1351
No. 2 Adangal for F. 1353
No. 2 Adangal for F. 1359
Chitta for F. 1359
On the advice of Mr. D. V. Naidu, the then Tahsildar, Puttur, an application was made by the said Govindaswamy and other before the Tahsildar and the said Tahsildar had issued to them certified extracts of the above documents with a view to confer the rights on the applicants.
After obtaining the certified copies, the land grabbers filed claims under section 11(a) of Estate Abolition Act before the Settlement Officer, Nellore for the grant of titles to the land. They filed claims before the Settlement Officer, Nellore in the year 1976 and on the strength of the admission of their claims in the Settlement Officer, Nellore they has obtained stay orders from the High Court against the District Collector no to issue pattas to any other third party.
Based on this stay order, the land grabbers sold out the entire land to may rich people in and around Chittoor Districts as well as some of those in Chennai.
The landless poor, however persisted with their petitions to the District Collector for reconsideration. The then District Revenue Officer, Miss Gayatri Devi, I.A.S. conducted a through enquiry on the nture of the land and also the existence of the held that the manipulated documents prepared by the then Tahsildar and the land grabbers were false and fake and also issued proceedings cancelling all fabricated documents issued by the Tahsildar. Accordingly, the then Tahsildar Sri Iman Khan Bahimani cancelled even the certified copies of the so called fabricated Adanglas (Vide Reg No. 13.3/3527/73 dated
3-5-1977) with this the claim of the land grabbers had become null and void in the eye law.
Under the guise of the orders of the Hon’ble High Court dated 19-11-1979 in WP No.
1633 of 1978, the mentioned supra said K. Govinda Swamy and others and as well as the persons who purchased from them, had started harassing the landless poor dalits of AM
Puram village who were reclaiming the Government lands in the nature of forest since
1970. Having failed to get the dalits of A.M. Puram evicted from the lands of Vidyusadasivapuram, Mr. Govinda Swamy and others who were total strangers to that area, has taken the help of Sri P. Venkata Muni Chetty, Sarpanch of Taduku village in which the Vidyutsadasivapuram, lands are situated and it appeared that the said Sri P. Venkatamuni Chetty, Sarpanch was offred 50 acres in the said lands, for providing necessary assistance and muscle power to evicts the Dalits of AM Puram village from the said lands. The said Venkatamuni Chetty, being the Sarpanch of that village had mislead the Dalits of all the neighbouring village and clandestinely divided the dalits into sub-castes and setup one subcaste against another sub-caste with the ulterior motive of peventing permanently the landless poor Dalits from entering into the Vidyutsadasivapuram lands.
Dr. R. Subbaramaiah Enters the Scene in Support of the Land less Poor.
The way in which the dalits of A.M. Puram were treated by the said people for evictng them from the government lands was so inhuman and cruel that Dr. R. Subbaramaiah, who was then a student in Medical course, was thoroughly shocked. Humble and peace loving, Dr. R. Subbaraamaih first made sincere efforts to settle the dispute amicably and had virtually begged the said Govindaswamy and others to allow the A.M. Puram dalits to enjoy the meagre government lands under their occupation about 60 acres, as all of them were landless poor persons and had no other assets or source of income.Taking advantage of the humility and modesty of Dr. R. Subbaramaiah, Mr. Govindaswamy and Mr. Ramakrishnama Raju had insulted and humiliated him causing severe hurt ot his feeling. The humiliation has strengthened the resolve of Dr. Subbaramaiah to protect the just interests, of the poor dalits. Dr. R. Subbaramaiah then undertook the task of meeting all the concerned revenue authoritie4s including the District Collector and sought their support in the matter. They assured full support to prevent illegal encroachment of the government lands of Vidyutsadasivapuram and promised allotment of the same to the deserving landless poor. The support of District officials had given a lot of encouragement to Dr. R. Subbaramaiah, and sustained his interest in the issue. Simultaneoulsy Dr. R. Subbaramaiah examined the so called rights of the said Govindaswamy and others on the lands of Vidyutsadasivapuram and was continued beyond doubt that neither the said Govndindaswamy and others nor any one else had any semblance of right to the land whatsoever as they were the government lands in the nature of forest and that the entire lands of Vidyutsadasivapuram were vested in the government.
Organisation of the Poor in 12 Villages
Dr. R. Subbaramaiah soon realised that he could not fight the powerful vested interests alone and that the entire struggle should be broad based with the land less poor in the forefront of the struggle. Therefore, Dr. R. Subbaramaiah took upon himself the task of mobilising the landless poor in the 12 habitations irrespective of caste around the Vidyutsadasivapuram land issue. It took more than one year for Dr. R. Subbaramaiah to educate the landless poor about the misdeeds of not only the said K. Govindaswamy and others, but also the villagfe Sarpanch P. Venkatamuni Chetty who had created misunderstanding amongst the Dalits by dividing them on sub caste basis. Slowly and
steadily, Dr. R. Subbaramaiah was able to bring about solidarity among the landless poor and channelised their energies for securing the government surplus lands situated in Vidyutsadasivapuram and to prevent their their illegal occupation by the land grabbers.
The Land less poor Resist the Entry of Land Grabbers
Dr. R. Subbaramaiah’s organisation and conscientization of the poor had successfully but peacefully prevented several efforts made by the land grabbers to occupy the Vidyutsadasivapuram lands. The continuous vigil and alert exercised by the poor nullified the efforts of the grabbers. Having failed in their attempts to get possession of the said government lands of Vidyutsadasivapuram, the said Govindaswamy and others had resorted other means. A series of seven false police complaints were filed against Dr. R. Subbaramaiah and other landless poor for alleged offences u/s 147, 148, 427, 379 read with 149 IPC. They were numbered as CCs. No. 81/83, 82/83, 83/83, 84/83, 85/83, 86/83 and 87/83 and all on the file of the Additional Munsif Magistrate, Puttur. The main accused in all cases, Dr. R. Subbaramaiah was subjected to all sorts of harassment nad humiliation. The police cases resulted in a lot of avoidable expenditure and damage to Dr. R. Subbaramaiah carrer. But all the false cases ended in acquittal, although Dr. R. Subbaramaiah has to suffer for four long years. In fact, the prolonged litigation had affected the studies of Dr. R. Subbaramaiah. Instead of one year, Dr. R. Subbaramaiah had to spend three years and six months to complete his internship. Mr. Govindaswamy and company were not tired of false litigation. Taking advantage of the police cases, the said Govindaswamy and others filed Civil Suit OS. No. 106/83 in Puttur Court seeking police protection to enter into the said lands and the said suit was also dismissed after six long years for non prosecution by the plaintiffs, which also indicates that the said Govindaswamy and others had no legal rights, title or interest. Even then, they were institution cases after cases only for the purpose of creating litigation and thereby preventing the authorities from grant of pattas to the landless poor.
In the meantime in the claim petitions filed by K. Govindaswamy and others, for getting
Roytwari patts of the said lands, the Settlement Officer by proceedings SR. No. 91 to
104/11(a)/80 Chittoor dated 29-12-1980 held that unless the lands shown in the claim petitions are localised with reference tot he survey numbers and survey records, the enquiry U/S 11(a) of E.A. Act could not be proceeded with. Therefore, the Govindaswamy and others had filed Write Petition No. 6566/80 and 5514/81 in the High Court of Andhra Pradesh by misrepresenting to the effect that they were in possession of the said lands, and obtaine4d directions to the revenue authorities to conduct the survey of the lands. Though the Collector in his letter DO. No. B3/7197/77 dated 11-12-1981 directed the Assistant Director, survey and land records, Chittoor to conduct survey operations in the lands only reference to the old records and enjoyment on ground of the said lands.
Though there were no records and enjoyment in the names of the land grabbers, the land survey officials were pressurized to surveying the land. Thus, the land grabbers got a concocted survey record as if they were in possession of land since 1939. Taking advantage of the false survey report, the said K. Govindaswamy and others had managed Mr. ADV Reddy, the then Settlement Officer, to get favourable orders in the claim petitions
filed U/s 11(a) of E.A. Act. Having come to know about the said mischief of the authorities concerned to favour Mr. Govindaswamy, Dr. R. Subbaramaiah has moved the District Collector and other authorities to cancel the illegal survey report secured by Mr. Govindaswamy and other but of no avail. Having failed to get the illegal survey report cancelled, Dr. R. Subbaramaiah has issued a notice to the Commissioner of Survey and Settlements at Hyderabad to conduct a proper enquiry aobut the illegal survey report of the A.D. Chittor immediately as otherwise he would go on “FAST UNTO DEATH” for the cause of the unfortuneate landless poor persons of Vidyustasasivapuram. The Commissioner was kind enough to intervene in the matter personally visited the lands along with several officials, including Deputy Director, Kurnool, Settlement Officer, Nellore, District Collector, Chittoor, RDO and other Officials and conducted spot enquiry into the matter and issued orders in R.C. No. E2/22520/83 dated 26-3-84, holding that the initial survey records of enjoyment and possession of the lands of Vidyutsadasivapuram on ground were fabricated and had no specific enjoyment with conclusive proof and there were no preabolition records to fall back upon and therefore cancelled the Survey Report of the AD Chittoor. He had also ordered that the records showing the boundaries of the said village along with fair land register, which must reflect the state on ground, i.e., mon- formation of the survey members as specific enjoyment. He had also suspended three officials, who were responsible for submission of the false survey report. The said order dated 26-3-84 and sought for a direction not to conduct fresh survey of the said lands. By misrepresenting the facts to the Hon’ble Court, he had successfully obtained stay on
15-12-89, and prevented the survey of the said loand as directed by the Commissioner. Having come to know about the mischief played by the said Govindaswamy, Dr. R. Subbaramaiah later got impleaded in the above write petition and brought the correct facts to the notice of the Hon’ble High Court and sought the vacation of the stay granted in the said writ petition and the writ petition was dismissed by the Hon’ble High Court on
24-3-98 for non-prosecution by the petitioner, i.e. Mr. K. Govindaswamy.
In the meantime, Mr Govindaswamy filed another suit O.S. No. 38/91 in the Civil Court at Puttur seeking grant of the title and injunction restraining the District Collector and MRO from interfering with the land without even specifying the boundaries opf the suit land. At the instance of Mr. Govindaswamy, nine other suits i.e., OS. No. 49/91 to 175/91 were filed by one Sri C. D. Padamanabhan, S/O Damodhar Chetty of Chennai claiming as GPA holder of certain “land holders” to whom K.Govindaswamy had allegedly sold the said lands. Though all the Suits/Criminal cases/Writ petitions filed by Mr. Govindaswamy had no evidence and material to prone his ownership or title he was successfully misleading the Hon’ble Courts nad getting interim orders in his favour in every successive case and was stalling all the proceedings for grant of pattas to the landless poor. Thus, despite the effective defence of the case by the government, Dr. R. Subbaramaiah and the landless poor had to suffer for several years. The fact that all the cases for dismissed for non-prosecution by the Plantiffs, Govindaswamy and other indicates that were successfully abusing the process of law. Therefore, on a request made by Dr. R. Subbaramaiah, the District Collector by his proceedings ROC No. B6/8042/91 dated 8-2-1993 permitted him to engage a private counsel, Mr. B. Siva Prasad, senior lawyer at Tirupati, to assist the Government pleader in the suits filed by the said Govindaswamy and his henchman and to protect the interests of the landless poor and as well as the Government lands from illegal
occupation. After prolonging the litigation for about 6 years virtually stalling all action by the government, all the nine suits mentioned above were dismissed for non-prosecution bythe plaintiffs, i.e. Govindaswamy and others in 1997.
Meanwhile, the Government by order G.O. Ms. No. 891 Revenue dated 25-9-1990 wound up the post of the Settlement Officer and the Joint Collector of each district has been appointed as Settlement Officer for each district to settle these types of cases. This G.O. in which the Joint Collector is appointed as Settlement Officer has been suspended by the High Court pending disposal of the writ petition filed by the various parties in the state. However, the G.O. was confirmed by the High Court then the Joint Collector of each district can officiate as the Settlement Officer, for each District in their judgement on
15-3-1994. After the judgement of the High Court empowering the Joint Collector to be the Settlement Officer, the then Joint Collector Mr. Narasinga Rao, IAS visited the land and issued notices to the grabbers to appear before the court by person or counsel. But Mr. K. Govindaswamy and six others had filed W.P. No. 20348 of 1994 misrepresenting facts and thereby obtaining stay orders on the enquiry of Joint Collector on the ground that the Joint Collector had earlier filed a counter affidavit favouring the government before the Settlement Officer, Nellore, Dr. R. Subbaramaiah got himself impleaded in the said W.P. and sought vacation of the stay granted in the Writ Petition and brought to the notice of the Hon’ble High Court by Judgement dated 17-8-2000 dismissed W.P. 20348/94.
Establishment of Mother India Community Development Association (MICDA)
Dr. R. Subbaramaiah has been successfully fighting litigation after litigation at his own cost, while Govindaswamy and others kept on instating cases after cases, with the money obtained from selling the said government lands to gullible parties on paper.
In addition to the court cases, Mr. Govindaswamy and his followers, have not left any stone unturned to harass Dr. R. Subbaramaiah Inspite of the suffering and financial loss suffered, Dr. Subbaramaiah fought the battle single handed for over 10 years which won him the love and appreciation of the landless poor. He has also received treamendous appreciation from the press for his struggle for the poor. But the valiant struggles for the land for the poor had landed Dr. Subbaramaiah in several problems. Dr. R. Subbaramaiah soon realised that a single individual had several limitations in fightig for the poor. Fortunately, several like minded persons came together at the instance of Dr. R. Subbaramaiah to support movement launched by Dr. Subbaramaiah. To carry forward the struggle of the landless poor. Effectively a voluntary organisation, under the name Mother India Community Development Association (MICDA) was formed and registered in 1987. The society was also registered under FCRA in 1991. To defend endless litigation instituted by Mr. Govindaswamy and others and to come out of several false criminal cases filed against Dr. Subbaramaiah and the landless poor, the MICDA had approached OXFAM (India) Trust, Secunderabad for financial help. The OXFAM (India) Trust provided some timely financial assistance to MICDA without which it could have been impossible to succeed in all the false cases, both civil and criminal.
Judgement of the Joint Collector-cum-Settlement Officer
In pursuance eof the judgment of the Hon’ble Court upholding the power of the Joint Collector to discharge the duties of the Settlement Officer, the then Joint Collector-cum- Settlement Officer Sri Karikala Vallavan, IAS, had in the year 1995 issued notices to claimant petitioners U/S 15(I) was alsoi rejected on the ground that it was not a ryoti land. Hence, the land in question cannot be a ryoti land and the claimant who is nowhere in occupation of non-ryoti land cannot be a ryot. The claimant also does not seem to be serious and sincere in his claim as he has not made appearance for all the hearings. Moreover, the claimant has not produced any document in respect of his claim. Whatever the documents produced at the time of filling claim were cancelled subsequently by the then Tahsildar, Puttur who is said to have issued (cancellation orders) on the ground that they were all fabricated documents. This has got a telling effect on the ingenuineness of the claim made.
In short, the whole case appears to be a connoted one by the vested interests with a greedy ambition to grab very valuable land. The contradictions in the statement under mischief detected goes to show that this claim is nothing short of hungry wolf and eye on the little land which is fertile and virgin.
Hence, I am of the opinion that there are no ryoti lands in the village; that no paimash records were maintained during the pre-abolition period; that it must be constructed that there were no ryoti lands in the village as on 1-7-1945 much less on the date of notification of the village; that whatever the documents manufactured subsequent to the notification of the village. It is apparent from the record that the Commissioner of Suvery settlement to the notification of the village. It is apparent from the record that the Commissioner of Survey settlements and land records; Andhra Pradesh, Hyderabad, has also inspected the lands in Vidyutsadasivapuram village along with survey officials and noticed that the entire land consisted of shrubs and jungle growth with small pebbles, that there is some land clearance in patches but there is no cultivation that the clearance appears to have been done in the recent past but there could not have been any cultivation prior to 1970 by the claimants.
In view of the fact that a declaration was made under section 3(I) of R. R. Act 1947 that there were no ryoti lands in Vidyutsadasivapuram village, the facts is fortified that there were no ryothi lands in the village during the pre-abolition period.
Planning by the District Officials for Integrated Development of VSS Puram.
In pursuance of the dismissal of the claim petitions, the MRO, Puttur has granted lease pattas on 25-8-1995 in favour of the landless poor and deserving persons after earmaking certain lands to various communal purposes, such as water tanks, school, habitation, etc., pending grant of DKT pattas. The allottees have taken possession of the lands allotted to them immediately and reclaimed the same and brought the allotted land under cultivation with a lot of sweat and blood. They have also shifted their residence to the said lands after constructing semi-permanent huts. A primary school has been started for children. The Collector and the Joint Collector havd personally visited the lands along with the concerned District authorities of various other Departments and had woked out various plans to
extend other welfare activities to the allottees of the lands as per the ongoing government. Policies and programmes such as provision of pucca houses. Electricity, drinking water, irrigation and other developmental activities.
Prolonged Litigation by the Land Grabbers and Stalling of Developmental Activities
To stall the said developmental activities in Vidyutsadasivapuram, Mr. Govindaswamy along with others had filed another WP. No. 19347/95 in the Honb’ble High Court on
28-8-1995 and again by misrepresenting the facts that their claim petitions were pending before the Joint Collector had obtained stay of the assisgnment of the said land to the landless poor. He had also filed a suit O.S. No. 60/95 in the Civil Court at Puttur, for permanent injunction restraining all the concerned authorities from constructing pucca houses, forming of streets, roads and erection the electric poles, etc., and again by misrepresenting facts, had obtained an interim injunction and stalled the entire developmental activities. Mr. Govindaswamy and his followers, attempted to enter into the Vidyutsadasivapuram lands on one pretext or the other and when all their attempts.
Failed in the lower court at Puttur, they attempts failed in the lower Court at Puttur, they filed CRP in the High Court, but the same was also dismissed by order dated 16.4.1996. Curiously, the said suit O. S. No. 60/95 was dismissed, as withdrawn on 19-1-1999. In the meantime, Mr. Govindaswamy had filed WP No. 13896/95 in the Hon’ble High Court seeking police protection, but it was not admitted and was disposed off at the admission stage by the order dated 16-7-96. Thereafter, Dr. Subbaramaiah came to know about WP. No. 19347/95 filed by the said Govindaswamy and others and by misrepresenting the facts they had obtained interim order not to assign the said lands to 3rd parties, pending further orders of the High Court, and therefore, he got impleaded in the above writ petition and sought for vacation of the stay. The said W.P was dismissed by Judgement dated
17-8-2000, by the Hon’ble High Court, Similarly, at the instance of Mr. Govindaswamy certain other persons had filed W. P. No. 24741 of 1995 seeking direction against assignment the lands in Vidyutsadasivapuram by falsely stating that their claims were pending before the Director of Settlement and the said Writ Petition was also dismissed on
At the instance of Mr. Govinda Swamy one Mr. P. Ramakrishnam Raju and other had filed W. P. No. 10908/96 for the same relief which was sought for in WP No. 19347 of 1995 and W. P. No. 24741/95 and by falsely stating that their claim petitions filed U/S 11 (a) of E. A Act 1948 were pending before the Director of Settlement they had obtained a status quo order. On coming to know about the same, Dr. R. Subbaramaiah got himself impleaded in W. P. No. 10908 of 1996 and his instance, W. P. No. 10908 of 1996 was also dismissed by the Hon’ble High Court by judgement dated 19-12-2000. During the pendency of the above Writ Petitions, Mr. K. Govinda Swamy and 34 others had filed another Writ Petition No. 8085 of 1997 claiming relief, similar to that of the previous Writ Petition and the same was dismissed by the Hon;ble High Court by judgement dated
Judgement of Special Commissioner and Director of Settlement
Similarly, the revisions petitions filed by Mr. Govinda Swamy and others before the
Director, survey and settlements, against the rejection order of the Joint Collector dated
3-6-1995 were also dismissed by order dated 30-3-1999, of the special Commissioner and
Director of settlements. Progress Made
Despite the multitude of Court cases filed and the prolonged litigation imposed on the land less poor, MICDA under the leadership of Dr. R Subbaramaiah has been able to achieve commendable progress in the resettlement project. The progress would not have been possible but for the generous assistance and support of progressive funding agencies such as OXFAM (India) Trust, Action Aid, BORDA and the District Government. We are very much thankful to OXFAM (India) Trust and Action Aid specifically to Mr. Arokyam & Ms Sachya who has extended their whole hearted cooperation, by giving moral support and laisoning with other funding agencies, otherwise we could not take this issue to this extent. The progress achieved under the project is briefly indicated below:
Most critical achievement had been:
Acquiring the lease pattas to the poor settlers from the Government.
Other achievements included :
Possession of the land of an extent of about 720 acres taken by the land less poor in a peaceful
Clearing the land of thorny bushes, stems and boulders by the beneficiaries. Partial levelling and bunding of the land;
Land development in 570 acroes of land, fit for cultivation; Formation of temporary habitation;
Construction of semi-permanent huts; Provision of five drinking water hand pumps;
Construction of permanent school structure and running of the High school; Formation of internal roads;
Survey, and subdivision of land into pieces, each of 1.5 acreas; Distribution of land by lottery method among the beneficiaries; Drilling of 17 irrigation borewells;
Cultivation of rain-fed crops; Plantation of mango in about 75 acres;
Construction of watershed structures such, ponds, galli controls and contour bands. Formation of 58 lakhs worth of pucca tar approached road from Tirupati-Chennai highway
to the new habitation with the financial support of NABARD.