Kerala to probe 'campaign' to hive off Idukki district

Last Updated: Sat, Jan 05, 2013 12:10 hrs

Idukki (Kerala), Jan 5 (IANS) Kerala Home Minister Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan Saturday said a probe would be launched into the so called "campaign" in the state's Idukki district to hive it off to Tamil Nadu.

"The police will certainly look into the campaign which is said to be promoted through CDs in Idukki district," Radhakrishnan told reporters here.

Idukki borders the Tamil Nadu districts of Theni and Kambam. Idukki's hilly terrain has huge areas of plantation estates where a good number of workers are from Tamil Nadu.

"I am yet to get a copy of the CD that's believed to be in circulation. Few people are trying to whip up Tamil passion and influence these estate workers," Devikulam CPI-M legislator S. Rajendran told IANS.

The thickly populated taluks or sub-divisions of Idukki district having a large number of Tamil speaking population include Devikulam, Udumbanchola and Peerumade.

"In these three taluks, close to 70 percent are Tamil speaking people. In Tamil Nadu, water has always been politicized. Earlier, a series of agitations took place in both the states over the Mullaperiyar dam (in Idukki district) issue," Rajendran added.

Munnar, a famous tourist destination, is also located in Idukki district. Of the 1.1 million people in Idukki, 40 percent are Tamil speaking.

However, Idukki legislator Roshy Augustine of the Kerala Congress (Mani), which is an ally of the ruling Congress in the state, said it was pointless to discuss such issues.

"How is it possible to hive off a portion of one state and add it to another. The best thing is to ignore issues like this," Augustine said.

The last time when the passion was whipped up over the Mullaperiyar dam, it raised serious security concerns in both Kerala and Tamil Nadu. While people in Kerala were in favour of building the 19th century dam anew, people in Tamil Nadu were demanding an increase in its height.

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