Samwaad Yatra – Day 12: Report from Kasargoud district of Kerala
Prof. Surendranath, senior social activist, Mr. Sudhakaran, advocate, and Mr. A. Madhavan, freedom fighter, were the special speakers of the meeting at Kozikode. According to them, the percentage of the tribal population in Kozhikode and Wayanad is higher than in other districts. The Forest Rights Act that was implemented as an outcome of the Janadesh 2007 campaign had a limited success in a state like Kerala, where Adivasis are in the minority in the social demographic profile. 700 genuine claims for land by Adivasis have still not been resolved. While it is wonderful that the awareness among the general population regarding the issue of control over land and livelihood resources will improve because of Jansatyagraha, it is important that the attitude of administrative units of the local government bodies change.
The speakers suggested that the Yatra could take time to meet with the administrative body of the local governments wherever they go. Mr. Mahadevan expressed the hope that this Yatra will be like a second freedom struggle to bring forth other forms of freedom, which Mahatma Gandhi said, were necessary for India: economic and social freedom.