Coimbatore lawyers demand implementation of laws to protect forest land, elephant corridor (India)


Pratiksha Ramkumar, Times of India

Date Published


 A group of advocates under a new banner, Bharatha Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam, petitioned the Coimbatore district administration to implement the hill area development programme rules and the Forest Protection Act, 1927.

They said flouting of such rules and laws by encroaching upon forest areas was the reason behind the escalation of man-animal conflicts in the district.

The lawyers in their petition said the main reason behind man-animal conflicts in the Western Ghats and its foothills was many private organisations encroaching on forest land for their own personal profits.

They said such incidents had been increasingly occurring on the elephant corridor and the private organisations were also destroying the wildlife and water bodies existing on the corridor during their encroachment.

“The main reasons elephants come to agricultural land and rural areas for water and food is because their original water sources have been closed down,” said K K Karunanidhi, one of the petitioners.

The advocates have urged the district administration to take action against such private organisations found illegally sitting on forest land and implement the above acts properly.

“They should flatly refuse to register any land or permit any form of construction on the elephant corridor or forest land by private individuals. Even when they do purchase land bordering forests or the corridor, they should not be allowed to close water channels,” said R Senthilkumar, another advocate.

“There should be a clear demarcation across the ghats and plains of the elephant corridor borders in the forms of signage so that even public can detect an encroachment,” he said.