Karnataka

61 acres of forest land encroached by former Speaker reclaimed

Ramesh Kumar.

Ramesh Kumar.

In a joint operation, officials of the Forest and Police Departments reclaimed forest land encroached upon by the former Speaker of the Legislative Assembly Ramesh Kumar.

A team of senior officials carried out the eviction operation amid tight security on Monday as per the order of the Conservator of Forests, Bangalore Circle. In his March 31, 2012 order, he had directed Mr. Kumar to vacate the land encroached upon by him (Kumar) in the Jangalagunte forest area in Rayalpadu hobli of Srinivaspur taluk in Kolar district.

Others involved

In all, 121 acres of forest land has been encroached upon by various persons including Mr. Ramesh Kumar. He had encroached upon 61 acres of forest land.

The land is part of the nearly 2,400 acres of gomala land in the border village of Rayalpadu that was notified as forest land.

Case registered

A forest offence case was registered in 2006 against Mr. Ramesh Kumar for encroaching upon 61 acres of forest land.

Following this, the then Conservator of Forests U.V. Singh inspected the land and an order was passed asking Mr. Kumar to vacate it in a month's time.

The Task Force for Protection of Government Land headed by the former Additional Chief Secretary V. Balasubrahmanian inspected the encroached forest area and conducted primary survey. The Conservator of Forests, Bangalore Circle issued orders to evacuate encroachers from the said land after conducting elaborate proceedings as per the provisions of the Karnataka Forests Act.

The Deputy Conservator of Forests (DCF), Kolar Division, issued a fresh notice on September 29, 2010 and Mr. Kumar filed a writ petition questioning the notice of the DCF. The Karnataka High Court ordered a fresh joint survey and the DCF Kolar passed orders on June 24, 2011 summarily evicting the appellant from the encroached land.

Mr. Kumar again filed an appeal with the Conservator of Forests, Bangalore Division against this order. Disposing of the appeal, the Conservator of Forests, in an order dated March 31, 2012, ordered Mr. Kumar to vacate the encroached upon forest land.

Action taken

Following this order, the authorities concerned took action on Monday. They identified the land border and erected a signboard as well as flags and took possession of the land.

According to Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) Mune Gowda, the eviction operation was undertaken following the order of the Conservator of Forests.

Constructions

There is a temple and a guest house constructed by Mr. Ramesh Kumar in the encroached forest land. They and other constructions and facilities, including a tube well and trees cultivated on the land by Mr. Ramesh Kumar, were taken into their possession by the forest officials.

Divisional Forest Officer Mune Gowda, Assistant Conservator of Forests Puttanna, Deputy Superintendent of Police V. Govindaiah and Circle Inspector Linganna were among others who participated in the eviction operation on Monday.


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Printable version | Aug 11, 2022 3:13:58 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/61-acres-of-forest-land-encroached-by-former-speaker-reclaimed/article3374603.ece