By Mohan Devaiah/ K T Kutappa/ Save Cauvery Forum
It is proposed to cut more than 50,000 grown up trees of Kodagu Forest and Private Coffee Estates to facilitate passing of 400 KV High Tension Power Line from Mysore To Kozhikode (Kerala) through the forest and private coffee estates. Though Power line could have been taken from Kaiga (Uthara Kannada District) to Kozhikode along the coast, which is shorter by distance, it is surprising to note that the authorities have chosen this route (Mysore-Kodagu-Kozikode) which would be 250 KMs more than the coastal route. There would be a serious threat to the ecology of Kodagu and therefore, concerned authorities should wake up to save Kodagu from this danger.
By cutting such a dense forest, elephant problems in this area will become more severe. Workers in the Coffee Plantation and school going children will face maximum threat due to disturbance to elephants. This area of South Kodagu is also the catchment for Lakshmana Theertha River that is the main water source for Mysore and an important tributary of Cauvery River. Such large scale felling of trees in this area will definitely have an adverse affect on the water flow in Lakshmana Theertha River.
It is surprising that all the elected representatives of Kodagu (MLAs/MLCs & MP) are mum on this subject. In fact, all the so called ‘Elected representatives are well aware of the people’s opposition to the present route. They know that alternate alignment is being suggested which will not require any tree felling in Kodagu. However, it appears that these ‘Elected Representatives are keen to see the destruction of 50,000 trees for the benefit of the Kerala Timber Lobby.
The Government should order the Power Grid Corporation of India to stop cutting trees and make alternate arrangement to supply power to Kerala througeh Underground Cables. The same Power Grid Corporation of India has floated tenders for 400 KV Under ground Cable for Navi Mumbai. Then why this interest in felling trees in the Catchment of Lakshmatheerta in Kodagu by forcing an overhead transmission Line?
Our heritage sites being preserved from generations by our forefathers comprising Devara Kadu, Gomala, Uruduve, Mandu. Ambala, River banks & Tank beds are to be evicted from illegal encroachers and the sanctity is restored in true spirits as existed in pre’ 70s.
Only few persons and NGOs are fighting against this large scale destruction of forests.
River Cauvery, which is the main water source for about 8 Crore South Indians, for drinking, irrigation, industries, etc. is getting polluted day by day. People have started constructing houses adjacent to the River and sewage water is directly left to the River. Because of the large scale tourists all the unwanted materials are thrown in the River. Government should see that Sewage is separated from the River. Cutting of trees in large scale, in the name of development would one day lead to drying of River Cauvery and where should these 8 Crore people go for water? Therefore, people of Kodagu and all those beneficiaries of Cauvery Water have to raise their voice against large scale tree felling and polluting River Cauvery.
In this connection, Col. Cheppudira P. Muthanna, President, Coorg Wildlife Society; Dr. Balladichanda Nanjappa, President, Basavana Devaracadu Samithi and Kimmudira Ravi Changappa, Convenor, Kaveri Sene and few Gentlemen of NGOs would like to hold a presentation cum meeting with the Kodavas of Bangalore.
As requested by them, we have fixed a meeting at:
Join hands and Save Kodagu.