Dalit tenants have allegedly been asked to produce a certificate declaring that they are not practicing Christianity

Non-Hindu farmers cant cultivate temple land Andhras controversial GOImage for representation: Flickr/mckaysavage
news Friday, June 24, 2016 - 07:55

In a move that is bound to create controversy, the Andhra Pradesh government has allegedly directed officials to evict Dalit Christians and Muslim farmers from endowments land, claiming that no land belonging to a Hindu temple or mutt can be cultivated by a non-Hindu.

The Times of India reported that the move comes in the background of a Government Order (No. 425), which was issued last November, but is being implemented now, as land leases are renewed. 

The report adds:

Earlier this month, the government began serving notices on tenant farmers to immediately hand over the land under their possession. Dalit tenants have been asked to produce a certificate from the local church declaring that they are not practicing Christianity to continue farming in temple land, while Muslims have been barred from taking up cultivation in temple land under the new rules. 

“The tenant shall be evicted by the executive authority with the assistance of police invoking the provisions of section 84 and 86 of the Act treating him as an encroacher in the order passed under section 83(4) or 85(1) of the Act, apart from initiating other action specified in these rules," the newspaper quoted a senior official as saying.

Read the full report here.



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