Environmentalists flag violation of Wetland Act

A Malappuram-based environmental organisation has accused the Revenue Department of being lethargic towards the alleged large-scale violation of the Kerala Conservation of Paddy Land and Wetland Act, 2008, in the border areas of Kozhikode and Malappuram districts.

Mohammed Kunhikoya, president of Paristhithi Manushyavakasa Samiti, told the media here on Monday that paddy fields were being filled, land category was being changed by planting saplings there, and ‘poramboke’ land had been encroached upon since 2011. Though complaints were lodged with the department, action was yet to be taken against culprits. Hectares of paddy fields in Kondotty and Eranad taluks in Malappuram district and some areas in Kozhikode district had been filled. He also claimed that there were large-scale encroachments on the banks of the Chaliyar river that flows through both the districts.

Samiti general secretary Abutty Vettupara claimed that even after the devastating floods last year, officials were granting permission for demolition of hillocks in Thuvvakkattumala and Kodiyammalmala in Vazhakkad village though there had been court orders against such activities there. “Those in the Malappuram district office of the Department of Geology are not taking our complaints seriously. They claim that they don’t have a vehicle to travel to these places. They also point out that filling of paddy fields does not come under their jurisdiction,” he alleged.

Additional District Magistrate Roshni Narayan said the destruction of the Kottooli wetlands was adversely affecting the existence of Kozhikode city and hence its upkeep was the responsibility of the whole society. She was speaking at an event organised by Kerala Nadi Samrakshana Samiti on World Wetlands Day on Sunday. Samiti general secretary T.V. Rajan presided over the function.

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Printable version | Mar 2, 2021 10:19:16 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kozhikode/environmentalists-flag-violation-of-wetland-act/article26178018.ece

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