Dr J Somanna apologises for hurting Kodavas

“The statement by leaders that my book Dalita Lokada novu-nalivu has hurt the sentiments of Kodavas has hurt me. I had no intention of hurting the sentiments of Kodava community members. If my book has hurt the sentiments of the people, then I seek apology,” said Balele Vijayalakshmi PU College Lecturer Dr J Somanna.

He said “I have documented local people’s views. The book is being published with the assistance of Kannada and Culture department. All the remarks are not my personal views,” he clarified. I have been working in Balele Vijayalakshmi PU College since 1990 and have great respect for Kodava culture and tradition. With respect to patriotism among Kodavas who are serving for the country, I have great respect. However, I never intended to hurt their sentiments. I do not have any association with Naxal movement. Let police clarify whether I have any connection with  the Naxals.”


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‘Balele bandh’ on March 29

Madikeri:Members of the Kodava Samaja in Belele town of Virajpet taluk in Kodagu and several other organisations have called for a “Balele bandh” on March 29 in protest against the alleged derogatory references to the Kodava community in a book written by J. Somanna, a lecturer at Vijayalakshmi Junior College in Balele.

President of the Balele Kodava Samaja Malchira Bose told presspersons here on Wednesday that there were unwanted references to the style in whichsari is worn by Kodava women and blasphemous remarks against Goddess Cauvery, the presiding deity of the Kodavas, in the book “Dalit Lokada Novu Nalivu.”

Mr. Somanna must apologise to the Kodava people and withdraw his book, he demanded. Mr. Bose said they would not disturb the ongoing examinations or prevent buses from plying.

The Deputy Commissioner and the Superintendent of Police would be apprised of the issue, Mr. Bose pointed out.


Secretary of the college C.S. Krishna Ganapathi said a explanation was sought from the lecturer following a letter from the samaja, but he denied writing anything derogatory against the community.

Mr. Somanna also took up the matter with veteran politician A.K. Subbaiah who released a press statement condemning the decision of the college to seek an explanation from the writer.


Yuvaka Sangha from Kottageri; Gorugodu Aiyappa Sangha from Karmadu; Sports Club and Farmers’ Association from Balele town; Kalluguddeshwara Swasahaya Sangha from Ponnappasante; Vijaya Grameena Sangha from Nittur; Kodava Sangha from Devanoor and Sarvajanika Hitarakshna Samiti from Srimangla have extended support to the March 29 bandh, Mr. Bose added.

– The Hindu

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