Grabbed Kodai Land to Turn Forest

Published: 02nd September 2014 06:13 AM  |   Last Updated: 02nd September 2014 06:13 AM   |  A+A-

CHENNAI: The State government took a decision to convert the land in question in Poolathur village near Kodaikanal as reserve forest land in terms of the earlier directions of the Madras High Court, the Dindigul District Collector informed the High Court on Monday.

Originally, social worker AR Gokulakrishnan filed a writ petition for a direction to the forest department to retrieve one acre and 30 cents of land from Executive Officer of Tea Board in Coonoor, R Ambalavanan, who encroached upon the land in Poolathur village near Kodaikanal and constructed a monumental building ‘Mirror Palace’ by abusing his official position.

A division bench of Justice R Banumathi (since transferred on elevation) and Justice TS Sivagnanam on September 5, 2013, had directed the District Collector to remove all the encroachments on the land in question and hand over the same to the Conservator of Forest, Dindigul circle. Immediately after taking possession of the property, a proposal should be sent to the competent authority for declaring the area as forest land.

Contending that this order has not been complied with, Gokulakrishnan filed the present contempt application. When the matter came up on August 28, the Dindigul Collector submitted that a decision to convert the land in question as forest land has been taken.

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