BENGALURU: The State government would submit its reply to the Union government on K Kasturirangan report on conservation of the eco-sensitive Western Ghats after eliciting views from all the stakeholders.
The government is waiting for inputs from the Expert Committee constituted on the issue.
Speaking to reporters, Forest Minister B Ramanath Rai said the government would take all measures to protect the interests of the people living in the area, which has been identified as Ecologically Sensitive Area (ESA) by the expert groups.
“Kasturirangan committee had stated that it had kept out about 37 per cent of the Western Ghats area from the ambit of the ESA region. We have constituted the expert committee to explore possibilities to increase the area,” Rai stated .A cabinet sub-committee has also been set up to review the works of the expert committee headed by R M N Sahai, a former Chief Conservator of Forest,” he said.
The expert committee has already identified about 700 villages which can be excluded from the ESA region (included by the expert groups), he said the committee had issued guidelines to all the seven DCs on the issue.
The members of the cabinet sub-committee would also tour the districts and take opinions of the people of the region, he said.
“We would submit a comprehensive report to the Centre on the issue which would be more scientific and practical than the Kerala government,” he added.
No Probe into Tiger Killing
In reply to a question on the maneater tiger which was gunned down in Belagavi district recently, Rai said, “We had no intention to physically eliminate the animal.”
He also ruled out ordering a probe into the killing of the tiger and the failure on part of the forest officials in preventing the death of a pregnant woman.
He also denied that Rana George, son of Home Minister K J George and one of the members of the Wildlife Conservation Board, should be blamed for the incident.
The board had decided to relocate the tiger from Chikkamagaluru district (from where it was caught after it killed a woman) to the Belagavi forest region.