A contract has been awarded to a private company for tribal land in Attappadi. The agreement was signed on the land of the Attappady Cooperative Farming Society (ACFS), which was set up for the rehabilitation of slave-living tribals. ACF ACF has partnered with L.A. Homes, an affiliate of AS. The contract was signed by Ottapalam sub-collector Jerome George, managing director of S. Jerome George Attapadi was the Nodal Officer at the time of signing the contract. Even the Adivasis who got the lease on the farm were not aware of the fact that the contract was signed on February 8, 2019.
ACFS was established in 1975 to rehabilitate landless Scheduled Tribes. Started. Organic cardamom, coffee, oranges, coconuts, lemons, peppers, ginger, turmeric, and fish are also grown on 2,730 acres. Varadimala, Pothupadi, Chintakki, and Karuvara farms are part of the eco-tourism project. Officials say the new tourism project will create more jobs for tribals. The Adivasis’ response was that the Adivasi land was not the property of government officials.
ACF The Adivasis started seeking information after construction work started on Varadimala, one of the four farms under the AC. The cottages were cleaned and their digital measurements were taken for renovation. The final decision was made on eco-friendly design. Renovation work has been started on a large pond for irrigation purposes and fish farming as part of a future tourism project. Steps have been taken to build electric fences around the cottages to ensure the safety of tourists.
Thirty students were interviewed for jobs as part of Farm Tourism. Legal proceedings have been initiated to select candidates for the three posts (Accountant and Driver). Planting for cultivation and production of medicinal plants is in progress at Varadimala Farm. Renovation work of the treatment center has been started to attract tourists and ensure health care while maintaining the tribal treatment system of Attappadi.
Construction work has been started to renovate the pond adjacent to the Chintakki farm and renovate the dilapidated area adjacent to it. As part of farm tourism, activities have been started for raising and utilizing cattle. All these activities are carried out by a private company.
As per the agreement, the ACF The L.A. has the right to construct and use eco-friendly structures for tourism on tribal land under the control of the AC. Provided by Homes (Developer). The agreement is for 26 years with a 25 per cent dividend. Of this, one year is the construction period. The agreement will be renewed every five years. It is the responsibility of the developer to protect the wildlife habitat and travelers.
The scheme can be implemented in all the four farms under Varadimala, Pothupadi, Chintakki and Karuvara under ACFS. Accommodation and trekking facilities in bamboo huts and huts will be part of the project. These include getting acquainted with tribal food, tribal culture and art, participating in agricultural activities including harvesting, and visiting farms and tribal villages under the Society. Fish farming in Chintakki will also be part of the project. The four farms will be connected and various packages will be provided to the travelers. Tourists will be offered various packages that last for more than one day. The plan is to attract foreign tourists to Attappady through this.
The application was invited on November 28, 2018. It was advertised that proposals (Request for Proposals) could be submitted to individuals and agencies interested in taking charge of the eco-tourism project on farms under the control of ACFS. The advertisement also said that outsiders from Attappady could also apply. The Society is governed by a Board of Governors headed by the Collector, Sub-Collector and the Assistant Director of Tribal Development. The adivasis allege that these officials have violated the law.