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Recommendations on forests to be submitted to SC on Monday

Published: 29th September 2012 12:05 PM  |   Last Updated: 29th September 2012 12:05 PM   |  A+A-

Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said here on Friday that the State Government’s recommendations on tiger reserve forests would be submitted to the Supreme Court on Monday.

The Advocate-General has been entrusted to submit an affidavit after discussing with the Forest-Wildlife Department and the Devaswom Board.

He pointed out that the master plan for Sabarimala, considering the development for the next 50 years, was prepared following the Supreme Court directive.

The Central Government had allotted 12.67 acres of land from the tiger reserve for Sabarimala development with the consent of the Supreme Court.

The government will convince the Supreme Court not to introduce any restriction on pilgrims to Sabarimala.

Chandy said that the Public Accounts Committee headed by Bhuta Singh had visited Sabarimala in 2003 and criticised the government for not having proper infrastructure and directed to ensure more facilities.

The UDF Government in 2004 had submitted a memorandum to the Union Government to allot forest land for the development of Sabarimala.

The Union Environment Ministry officials visited Sabarimala and asked the State Government to prepare a master plan. This plan was accepted by the Environment Ministry, the Central Empowered Committee and the National Wild Life Board chaired by the Prime Minister.

The Chief Minister said that even before declaring the Sabarimala area as a tiger reserve, the temple was existing there.

Those who travel to Sabarimala are not visitors but pilgrims. Sabarimala is situated in the buffer zone of the tiger reserve forest and not in the core area.

“The new queue complex in Marakoottam will be inaugurated on October 20,” he said.

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