Tribals living in a village around 16 kilometres away from Palakkad town in Kerala are distressed about the difficulties they have to undergo to get educational qualification, ironically in a state which has the highest literacy rate in the country.
It is easy to understand their haplessness as the nearest school is situated around 10 kilometres away from the area and to reach the nearest bus stop they have to walk for two kilometres on unconstructed road and mud lanes.
Coincidentally, Kerala leads the country with a 96.2 per cent literacy rate, according to a report based on National Statistical Office (NSO) survey.
Tribals living in a small village named Adappu Colony near Chembana in Malampuzha Panchayath in Palakkad district also complained of a lack of regular supply of drinking water, electricity, hospital and other basic infrastructure.
They say their children can only attend schools either till the primary or middle-level classes.
Rajan, a tribal, said that he wanted the elected legislator to address their grievance and provide them with better education system, drinking water, roads, electricity, basic hospital facility and cemented house.
Another villager Letha has a similar plea stressing that a better education system will help their children to get a better qualification and access to better job opportunities.
One more villager Unni Krishan urged the government to provide electricity to every house in the village and arrange drinking water facility for them so that they can lead a better life.
Vismaya Sajikumar, a social worker, told that despite odds, these villagers have made an arrangement of drinking water through a pipeline system that is connected with mountain water.
Dinesh Kumar, who lives near this village said that these villagers have also developed an electric fence to keep them safe from wild mals including elephant and wild boar.
However, another villager said that they can not remain safe from snake and reptiles as they live in wooden houses.
According to villagers, there are only three toilets in three houses and those from the remaining houses had to defecate in the open due to a lack of toilets.
In this small village, hundreds of people live in some 15 to 20 houses and they said they will go and cast their vote on April 6. The village falls under the Malampuzha assembly constituency.
Malampuzha is a CPM fortress where the Left party has won every Assembly election since 1967.
The 97-year-old CPM strongman and former chief minister VS Achuthanandan is currently serving his fourth term in the Malampuzha assembly constituency.
However, this time he had been dropped out due to health reasons and CPM has fielded A Prabhakaran as the candidate from the seat.
( With inputs from ANI )
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