IDUKKI: Making his stance clear on issues related to the Kurinjimala Sanctuary, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said the government would not take any steps that would harm the neelakurinji (Strobilanthes kunthiana) plants in Munnar. Pinarayi was speaking after inaugurating a project of the Idukki District Cooperative Bank at Cheruthoni here on Sunday.
He reiterated the government will not reduce the original extent of the sanctuary sprawled over in Kottakkamboor and Vattavada villages in the district. According to him, the prevailing controversies over the sanctuary have some dubious intentions.
“Controversies related to the Kurinjimala sanctuary are baseless. A campaign is that there were severe differences of opinion in the meeting held in Thiruvananthapuram over the sanctuary. This is baseless as it was a cordial meeting,” he said.
Pinarayi added a survey is essential to know the issues of the farmers there. “People should cooperate with the survey. The government won’t compromise on large-scale encroachers in Munnar. At the same time, all the settler farmers here will be protected,” he said. He added neelakurinji was a gift of nature and the government will not take any steps which would harm the plants.
According to him, the three-member ministerial committee appointed by the government would look into farmers’ issues and propose steps to resolve them. Pinarayi also said the government would complete the pattayam (title deed) distribution process in Idukki sooner than later.
“The government plans to award title deeds to all eligible farmers within two years and the next title deed distribution will be held next month. At the same time, the government has also decided to relax the conditions for awarding pattayams,” he said.
Power Minister M M Mani, Idukki MP Joyce George, CPM Idukki district secretary K K Jayachandran and others also attended the meeting.