Forest department to move court against Nilambur Kovilakam

Published: 18th July 2012 12:17 PM  |   Last Updated: 18th July 2012 12:17 PM   |  A+A-

The Forest officials have decided to move court against the decision to auction 1,163 acres and 31.5 cents of forest land here. Both Nilambur Kovilakam and the Forest Department claimed ownership of the land on Tuesday. The Forest Department countered the claim of the Kovilakam arguing that the government is the one and only custodian of Ecologically Fragile Land (EFL) in the country.

According to Nilambur Kovilakam, a Supreme Court order in 1996 made them the owners of the land. The court had given the land to 112 family members of the Kovilakam.

“The court verdict clearly indicates that it is agricultural land. The government later gave EFL status to the land to deny our ownership. Some political leaders in Malappuram district are trying to deny us our land. We will seek the intervention of the court in the issue,” a member of the Nilambur Kovilakam said on condition of anonymity.

The Kovilakam is also planning to file contempt of court petition against the Nilambur North DFO.

“There is a rubber estate of the Plantation Corporation  adjacent to our plot in the forest. Then, how come only our land is EFL? There is a clear agenda behind labelling it as EFL. In the auction, we are only handing over the ownership of the land that the Supreme Court had given us. It is not right to say we are selling the land,” the Kovilakam member added.

However, the Forest Department denied all the claims of the Kovilakam. According to the officials, when the land came under the EFL Act, the earlier court order became invalid. They said that the plot is in dense forest where animals are living.

“We will approach the court to clarify our stance in the issue. There is no point in claiming the land, because when it was declared EFL, it became government property.  In addition, the Forest Department was not a party in the case seeking court invention for auctioning the land. That point is enough to prevent the auction of the land,”

C K Sasidharan IFS, Chief Conservator of Forests and Custodian of Vested Forests told Express. The Forest Department has decided to approach the court after seeking legal advice in the issue.


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp