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Riot-hit refuse to come back (orissa story)

Posted by jytmkh on November 5, 2008

Dwijendranath Padhy

Riot-hit people of Kandhamal who have taken shelter in Sourakuligam village in Srikakulam district of Andhra Pradesh
Riot-hit people of Kandhamal who have taken shelter in Sourakuligam village in Srikakulam district of Andhra Pradesh

 

 

PARLAKHEMUNDI: At a time when the State Government is claiming that riot-hit people of Kandhamal and nearby areas are returning to their houses, there are about 250 persons of the strife-torn areas who are refusing to go back to their villages out of fear.

They have taken shelter in two villages of Meliaputti and Mandasa mandals of Srikakulam district in neighbouring Andhra Pradesh, 35 km from here.

As many as 109 persons of 35 families of Sarlaguda, Raikia, Nuagaon, Baliguda, Bataguda, Barkhama, G.Udaygiri, Tikabali and Suraballi areas have been residing at Sourakaligam village of Meliaputti mandal, AP, since Kandhamal violence.

‘‘Two days after the killing of Swami Lakshmanananda Saraswati, our village was attacked and houses were damaged. Apprehending danger, we fled to the nearby jungle and from there, we walked to Bhanjanagar in Ganjam. From there, we took a bus to Meliaputti,’’ said Santa Nayak (30). When asked if she wanted to return to her village in Kandhamal, she said : ‘‘We are not safe there.’’ Similar is the story of 10-year-old Amulya of Barkhama village of Baliguda.

He along with his family shifted to Sourakuligam village of Meliaputti immediately after the Swami’s killing.

The pastor of Meliaputti said these persons had submitted a memorandum to the District Collector of Srikakulam through the Tribal Christian United Welfare Association, requesting help basing on which the Collector has asked the local tehsildar to submit a report.

Besides, there are 140 others of Kandhamal, who have taken shelter at Kumudhisingi village of Mandasa mandal.

Meanwhile, social activists of Gajapati have urged the State Government to take steps to bring back these people to their villages.  (Expressbuzz)

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