By K.K. Aiyamma
Based on Punati Sridhar, Additional Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (APCCF)’s report, the state govt has issued notices to Deputy Conservation of Forests(DCF) of Madikeri & Hunsur asking for an explanation.
The inquiry report claims that:
1. The officials had clandestinely allowed Kodagu Hydel Projects Pvt Ltd to store equipment on two acres of what was virgin evergreen forest land near Kumarahalli village in Somwarpet taluk, Kodagu district. The 2 Acres of the disputed land is goverment paisari land.
2. The officials allowed a Car Rally in the Forest. The organisers of the rally using earth moving vehicles had bulldozed the existing coupe road facilitating the movement of rally cars amidst Bisle Reserve Forest.
3. The officials allowed Power Grid Corporation of India to fell trees in an area of 52 metres, when in actual they should have felled trees only in an area of 27 meters. Due to this act by PGCIL, it exposed the soil to erosion as the gradient at the stretch is over 60 degrees.
The icing on the cake is that;
Forest bungalow belonging to the forest department within Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary in Virajpet taluk was converted into an arrack shop.
The report is asking for strict action against the DCF and other officials involved.
It has to be noted that Coorg Wildlife Society had alleged that Power Grid Corporation of India is “hand in glove” with the timber mafia and though the power line can be taken through an alternate route to Kerala, PGCIL wants it to pass through Coorg.
The full Bangalore Mirror story by Niranjan Kaggere, here