Kawardha: In the Kabirdham district, the lawlessness of the land mafia can still be seen today as they expand into even government, private, and community properties. An utter negligence of this law has been quite evident in the Gram Panchayat, Charkhurakala, falling under Pandatarai Police station in a recent incident. Recently, a land mafia so ruthlessly used a tractor to grab and ravage a piece of the Patwa Paataskar community’s burial ground that had been in existence for over two hundred years.

The entire community was angered by this blatant act, and with this in mind, they reported the matter to the police, urging them to clear the land of the encroacher and ensure that a reinforcement was made against him. Various articles had it that Dabbu Pathak had plotted where the people of that community were buried. It was established by community leaders that when they reached the scene, the cemetery had been plowed and turned into a field using a tractor.

The man narrating his ordeal was one Hitesh Pataskar, ‘the district president’ of the Patwa Paataskar community in the village. He was passing by the community one day. He saw the man, now identified as Dabbu Pathak, or Prayas Pathak, using a tractor to flatten the community’s cemetery that was established in antiquity. It was a cemetery that contained many graves of tradition, including our forefathers’ graves, which were being violated. This act was very much a provocation to their kin, eliciting heated reactions from the community members who wanted to visit and lodge a complaint at the Pandatarai Police Station.

Pandatarai Police Station In-Charge Janmejay Pandey also stated that the incident was true. The previous night, people from the Patwa community had complained to him about the illegitimate action of encroaching on their ancestral graveyard by Dabbu Pathak, who had known the area for hundreds of years. To the complaint, both individuals have been called to record statements for further probing.

The chain of command of the community remains uncompromising in their call for the repairs of the cemetery back to its state before the invasion of Dabbu Pathak and seeking legal action against Dabbu Pathak. They will not allow any more infringement on their ancestral rights and assets to which they feel the guy is entitled.

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