The Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) has drawn the ire of environmentalists in Bellary over its announcement on Tuesday that it would present this year's green award to the district for planting 27 lakh trees in the last one year.

“Where are the 27 lakh trees planted in the district?” is the question being asked by activists. “It appears that the KSPCB has gone by the report submitted by the District Environment Officer in Bellary and took a decision without verifying the facts and making a field visit,” Santosh Martin, honorary district wildlife warden said. A.S. Sadashivaiah, KSPCB chairman, had announced the decision at a press conference in Bangalore on Tuesday.

Arvind Patel, a nature lover, said he was surprised that the environment officer in Bellary managed to get 27 lakh saplings in one year.

Mr. Martin and Dr. Patel, while speaking to The Hindu, urged the KSPCB chairman to reconsider his decision on granting green award to Bellary.

However, the board appears to have changed its mind and Bellary was not mentioned during the award distribution ceremony in Bangalore on Wednesday.