The workers of a tile factory that existed on the land 20 years ago claim they must be compensated as the factory had closed down.

Munroe Island CPI(M) protest over a land
news Controversy Thursday, July 23, 2020 - 13:49

A family in Kollam district’s Munroe Thuruth (Island) is struggling to sell their land to repay their debts. This after a group of Communist Party of India (Marxist) workers are preventing them from selling their land. The workers claim that they used to be employed at a tile factory that existed on the land and hence they need to get compensation. However, the factory used to exist before the family bought the land in 2000.

In order to stop the sale of the land, on July 16 the CPI(M) workers tied a rope around the land, placed some party flags and built a small shed for them to rest.

Shaheen S Shareef’s family bought the 1 acre and 33 cents of land 20 years ago. Since then there has been no tile factory there. But a few labourers who used to work in the factory are asking for compensation as the factory was closed.

In 2011, Shaheen’s father died by suicide, reportedly due to debts. Even then Shaheen did not try to sell the land as it was bought by his father. Though his grandparents helped him repay some of the debts, his family still has an outstanding debt of Rs 40 lakh. That is when they decided to sell off the land. Initially they sold off 10 cents. Since then Shaheen has been receiving calls from local CPI(M) members claiming that they need money.

“They have given us two options, either we should pay them Rs 5 lakh or make them middlemen so that they can charge brokerage from the buyer as well as from us. One of my cousins brought many buyers, but due to these issues they are not ready to buy the land,” Shaheen told TNM.

“The land is owned by my mother Rukhiya Beevi. I can pay my debts if we sell the land. We got an injunction order from the Kollam Munsiff court which says that these party workers shouldn’t enter our land. But they still came and placed their flags a day after the order. We have no idea what to do,” Shaheen says.

He also alleged that the workers were eyeing his land because Munroe Thuruth has been gaining attention in terms of tourism.

Based on the family’s complaint, East Kallada police arrested four party workers on Tuesday. They were later released on bail.

If you are aware of anyone facing mental health issues or feeling suicidal, help. Here are some helpline numbers of suicide-prevention organisations that can offer emotional suppport to individuals and families.   

Tamil Nadu

State health department's suicide helpline: 104

Sneha Suicide Prevention Centre - 044-24640050 (listed as the sole suicide prevention helpline in Tamil Nadu)

Andhra Pradesh

Life Suicide Prevention: 78930 78930

Roshni: 9166202000, 9127848584


Sahai (24-hour): 080 65000111, 080 65000222


Maithri: 0484 2540530

Chaithram: 0484 2361161

Both are 24-hour helpline numbers.


State government's suicide prevention (tollfree): 104

Roshni: 040 66202000, 6620200

SEVA: 09441778290, 040 27504682 (between 9 am and 7 pm)

Aasara offers support to inidviduals and families during an emotional crisis, for those dealing with mental health issues and suicidal ideation, and to those  undergoing trauma after the suicide of a loved one.    

24x7 Helpline: 9820466726

Click here for working helplines across India


Become a TNM Member for just Rs 999!
You can also support us with a one-time payment.