Says provisions of wildlife Act were ignored

The Supreme Court’s decision to allow Tamil Nadu to raise the water level of Mullaperiyar dam has failed to take note of the statutory provisions of the Wildlife Protection Act, observed the Kerala State Wildlife Advisory Board.

A meeting of the board held in Thiruvananthapuram on Wednesday said Section 29 of the Wildlife Act 1972 prescribed that the permission of the Chief Wildlife Warden of a State was required for enhancing the flow of water into or outside the sanctuary.

National board

The consent of the National Board for Wildlife was also required as the impact of the decision would be felt at the sanctuary of Periyar, the meeting pointed out.

As the decision would also impact the ecology of Periyar Tiger Reserve, the permission of the National Tiger Conservation Authority was also required before deciding to raise the water level, the meeting chaired by Chief Minister Oommen Chandy observed.

Part of petition

The observations of the State Wildlife Advisory Board would also form part of the review petition the State government is planning to file in the Mullaperiyar case, it was decided.

The State board should take up the issue with the national board as the decision would adversely impact the ecology of the Periyar Tiger Reserve, said V.D. Satheesan, MLA, who is also a member of the State Board.

The meeting has also decided to evolve a consensus to discourage the recent practice of vedi vazhipadu, the bursting of firecrackers as an offering in Sabarimala temple, which is located inside the Periyar forest.

Dumping of clothes

The recent practice of devotees abandoning clothes in river Pampa should be discouraged as it was causing serious ecological damage, the meeting pointed out.

Concerted campaigns to reduce littering and dumping of plastic refuse in the forest tracks leading to the temple and deployment of volunteers to clear the plastic and other refuses were also discussed at the meeting.

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