Members of Dalit community under the banner of Himachal Kisan Sabha (HKS) has submitted a memorandum to Mandi deputy commissioner Devesh Kumar, alleging one Govardhan Das of blocking the approach road to Tikkari village by erecting a wall of his house in the middle of the road.
Tikkari village falls under Joginder Nagar sub-division, where nearly 35 families of Dalits are residing.
HKS state joint secretary Kushal Bhardwaj, who led the delegation, said: "The road leads to Tikkari village, and has been used by the villagers since the Independence. Above all, many people had donated a part of their land to the Himachal government for widening of the road in 1995-96."
Bhardwaj further said in May 2012, the Public Works Department (PWD) had decided to metal the road and unloaded requisite material at various spots along the road, but due to incessant rain from June to August, the construction work was put on hold.
In September 2012, when the PWD decided to restart the metal work, he said, both the PWD officials and Tikkari residents were caught in surprise when they saw a wall raised in the middle of the road to construct a building.
Bhardwaj said despite assurances from PWD officials that they would get the wall removed, no action was taken so far. "The villagers are deprived of the road connectivity since then,"he added.
Meanwhile, acting on the complaint of the villagers, officials of the revenue department carried out demarcation of the land and found the person guilty of encroachment on the government land, said Bhardwaj, adding even then the PWD officials and police failed to remove the encroachment.
Bhardwaj said: "The person who has encroached upon the government land is a government employee and his act against the Dalit community people is a crime."
In the memorandum, the villagers had demanded quick action against the erring person, said Bhardwaj, adding they also warned the administration if their demand was not fulfilled, the residents of Tikkari village would not hesitate to lodge a complaint against the department concerned.