The State government has decided to request the Survey of India (SOI) to carry out a survey of the border between Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh in Bellary district and fix the border stones between the two States. This region has witnessed illegal iron ore mining activity in recent years.
Briefing presspersons on the decisions taken by the State Cabinet on Monday, Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister T.B. Jayachandra said some parts of Bellary district bordering the neighbouring State were allegedly shown as belonging to it, when the Obulapuram Mining Company, owned by the Reddy brothers, carried out illegal mining activity. The Reddy brothers were Ministers in the State government back then.
He said even the then Lokayukta N. Santosh Hegde, had mentioned this in his report on illegal mining.
Meanwhile, the case pertaining to the border dispute is also pending before the Supreme Court, which directed the State government to take the help of the Survey of India to set right the border. Accordingly, it has been decided to seek the help of the SOI.
Mr. Jayachandra said Karnataka government does not have all the documents on its border with Bellary district, which was part of Tamil Nadu before the re-organisation of States. This is why Tamil Nadu Government Archives has been requested to give an authenticated copy of the border. Asked whether the State government had the documents pertaining to the borders with Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh as far as the areas coming under the Bombay Karnataka and Hyderabad Karnataka districts are concerned, which also became part of Karnataka in 1956, the Minister said the government would get them from the two States if required.
The encroachment of areas in Bellary district was detected by a committee of Congress leaders headed by V.S. Ugrappa, appointed by the Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee.
The panel had demanded the areas should be claimed by the then government, which was headed by B.S. Yeddyurappa.