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BJP taking advantage of the ‘Kumki’ land issue in ZP election : Minister Rai

9:21 AM, Saturday, January 30th, 2016
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‘Kumki’ land Mangaluru : The Congress on Friday made an effort to pre-empt the Bharatiya Janata Party from taking advantage of the ‘Kumki’ land issue in the elections to the zilla and taluk panchayats with district in-charge Minister B. Ramanath Rai promising farmers that they would not be dispossessed of the land.

‘Kumki’ land refers to the parcels of land adjacent to farmers’ agricultural land over which they were given notional ownership. It is used to provide inputs to farming, including grazing of cattle, production of green manure and the like.

Dakshina Kannada MP Nalin Kumar Kateel on Wednesday had said that the BJP would stand by farmers and fight for rights over Kumki land. Quoting an affidavit of Revenue Minister V. Srinivas Prasad before the High Court, Mr. Kateel had accused the Congress government of taking away the right of farmers over the land. The BJP is organising an awareness programme in Puttur on February 6. Refuting claims of Mr. Kateel, Mr. Rai on Friday said that the government was committed to granting rights of ‘Kumki’ land to farmers. He told reporters on Friday that the affidavit of Mr. Prasad stating that a farmer did not have the right over the ‘Kumki’ land was related to a specific matter pending before the High Court. “It relates to that particular case and is not a general statement applicable to ‘Kumki’ land.”

Mr. Rai said notices issued by Dakshina Kannada Deputy Commissioner a few days ago to take back ‘Kumki’ land which was not being used for farming should not be construed as a result of Mr. Prasad’s affidavit.

“The DC has the power under the Act to issue such notices. It should not be generalised,” he said.

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