COIMBATORE: Villagers are up in arms against the move to construct houses by Tamil Nadu Slum Clearance Board (Tnscb) on the alleged elephant migratory path after video of an activist went viral in social media here on Monday.
Shiva, an activist and former journalist, posted a video in social media, reporting from the alleged controversial piece of land at the foothills of Western Ghats near Kalimangalam on Sunday evening, claiming that the land is being encroached by Tnscb without proper permission. He also posted the video footage of land being cleaned for construction.
Shiva told the DC, while the villagers and farmers of Coimbatore residing near the foothills of Western Ghats frequently witness man-elephant conflicts, the TNSCB had involved in a violation by cleaning and preparing several acres of land for constructing multistoried building inside Poluvampatty reserve forest area Block-2 near Alandhurai that comes under Coimbatore forest division; a part of the encroached area comes under Madhukkarai forest range also. The alleged landscape is a water flowing path during monsoon season, he added.
The local villagers and tribes have witnessed hundreds of elephants using this piece of land as their migratory path.
Without proper permission from the forest department and district environment committee, the Tnscb plans to construct 600 houses for accommodating 2,000 people, sources said.
Meanwhile, the Vellingiri Hills tribal association president Loganathan had moved the Madras High court, demanding a stay, claiming this project would result in serious man-animal conflicts and land use change....