JEYPORE: Intensifying the row with the State Government over the disputed Kotia panchayat in Koraput’s Potangi block, the Andhra Pradesh Government on Saturday distributed forest land rights to 19 families of the panchayat’s Arjuvalasa village.
This comes at a time when Koraput district administration had awarded houses to villagers in Potangi under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana and recently asked block officials to give a ground report of land record rights.
The latest move is yet another attempt by the neighbouring State to establish its administrative claim over the bordering panchayat by introducing welfare schemes in villages under it.
Odisha Government had even declared a special package of `50 crore to develop the stretch of villages on the border.
While Koraput district administration extended mobile network and started road connectivity work to these disputed border villages, the Vizianagaram administration too started similar road development projects near the border at Salur.
There was even a tussle between Odisha and Andhra Pradesh contractors over construction work in the border area. Both the States have been locked in a territorial dispute since 1960 over Kotia panchayat and there have been attempts by Andhra Pradesh Government to lure the people of the panchayat. The matter is still pending in the court.