THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Opposition leader V S Achuthanandan has said that land and real estate mafia were encroaching upon public lands, lakes and water bodies and then constructing illegal buildings and resorts. He called on the government to urgently set up a task force to counter these illegal activities.
He also called on the public to oppose such illegal encroachments of land and water bodies as otherwise the future of the state would be in peril.
Addressing a news conference, he alleged that both state and central government agencies were taking a supportive stand to these illegal activities which were being facilitated with vast sums of money. He said that despite the Supreme Court’s directive to initiate action against illegal buildings, the State Government had not taken any step to comply with the Apex court’s verdict.
VS said that he had directly visited Pattoor, Chelavannur, Panavally, Neyyattinkara and Adimalathura where encroachment had taken place.
At Panavally, a huge flat has been constructed near the Vembanadu lake spending hundreds of crores of rupees.
The Supreme Court had in its order on August 2, 2013, asked the Coastal management Authority and State Government to demolish the resort after finding it was a threat to the environment.
The order had to be complied within three months of delivering of the judgment. But the State Government has not demolished the structure yet.
The State Government should have demolished the resort by levying the cost on the resort owners.
Achuthanandan said that the inquiry committee entrusted to look into the encroachment by the DLF group at Chelavannur had found that the huge flat complex was set up in violation of all norms and recommended razing down the flats.
The flat complex has been constructed by encroaching upon backwaters at 19 places and these encroachments had reduced the width of the backwaters adversely affecting the livelihood of thousands of fishermen.
Achuthanandan asked the government to bring this report to the notice of the court and involve the court also to raze down the buildings.
He said violation of rules and encroachment of land had taken place in the construction of the Mall at Pattoor.
Though the Opposition had raised up the issue four times in the Assembly, it was the intervention of the Lok Ayukta had helped the matter to be brought to the consideration of the court which appointed an amicus curiae.
An inquiry by ADGP Vigilance was ordered and stop memo was issued.
Achuthanandan said that the government did not take a stand which would have helped demolish the flat here. VS alleged that the State Government had given back the land to Joys Resorts at Munnar who were evicted when the LDF Government was in power.