BENGALURU: Where have the villages and hamlets in Honnavar gone? This is the question local residents and Central Government officials are now asking the State Government. The discrepancy was noticed when coastal zonal management officials were assessing the maps to chalk out the coastal zonal regulations and found Survey No. 305 at Honnavar port area in Karwar missing from records.
It has also caught the attention of Survey of India, which has shot off a letter to the Uttara Kannada Deputy Commissioner and District Magistrate, questioning the wrong depiction of the Indian coastline. Acting on a complaint raised by local residents, the Survey of India has pointed out that borders of coastline villages -- Pavinkurva, Karki, Mallukurva and Kasarkod villages in Honnavar taluk --have been altered by the Uttar Kannada district administration and revenue maps too have been changed.
The letter states that any change in the coastline or coastal border is against the coastal zone management plan maps, which were approved in 2018. It has sought the relevant maps at the earliest from the State Government. The land in question accounts for 44 hectares which is part of the Sagarmala project to improve ports in the country.
“Alterations to coastal boundaries will have an impact on international boundaries. So, tracing the boundaries is all the more crucial. The ministry of defence too will get involved as there is an order that no coastal boundary can be altered,” said a surveyor.
He said that the missing area came to light when they were comparing the existing maps with the base maps of the revenue department. “The base maps showed Survey Number 305, which is missing in the recent revenue maps. The area was, however, part of the coastal zoning map when the regulations were decided,” he added.
Documents, field data being verified: Official
Regional Director of Coastal Zone Management P K Pattagar said they too found Survey Number 305 missing and referred it to the revenue department for verification. The Coastal Zone Management maps too don’t mark out the area, he added. Brijesh Kumar, secretary, environment and ecology, said that the matter has come to his knowledge and all the documents and field data are being verified.
Uttara Kannada DC Harish Kumar K, who has since been transferred, said it is difficult to believe that a survey number is missing. It could be an additional land being added or getting washed away due to soil erosion. However the matter is being discussed with the Ports Department, Karwar, he added.