Kochi: Hundreds of natives in and around Perumbavoor converged at Iringol kavu, the sacrod grove that is a repository of bio-diversity spread in 50 acres, on Sunday to save it from concrete invasion with a human protection circle around it. The grove has become a major tourist destination in recent times, especially for nature lovers.
What has provoked the natives and nature lovers alike is the attempt to turn a sand walkway through the forest like ecosystem into a concrete one and bids for encroachment into the area by vested interests. They say that after encroachments, the area of the sacred grove has been shrunk to 35 acres now which is administered by the Travancore Devaswom Board. The rest of the 15 acres is in private hands now.
The original custodians of the sacred grove had been 32 Brahmin families, which following land reforms landed in the hands of Travancore Devaswom Board (TDB). The grove is home to 44 bird varieties, 49 tree varieties, 19 spider varieties and several other flora and fauna.
“Our initiative is to draw attention to attem-pts from various sides including individuals to encroach up on the grove and destroy the green lung,” said Rejikumar P B, a member of Iringol Kavu Protection Council. “One individual who was successful in waging a case against TDB and secured 56 cents which was part of the grove, has now tried to cut a concrete road through the grove to his another plot at a distance. We have secured an injunction against it. But we thought it is high time a mass awareness is created on the importance to preserve the grove for the benefit of our generation and future generations. Hence the human protection circle was created on Sunday,” said Rejikumar P B, a member of Iringol Kavu Protection Council.
He said that TDB should have to be more alert regarding the affairs of Iringolkavu. “Its lapse led to the private individual securing the 56 cents of land and there are more attempts to encr-oach. We want TDB to prepare a masterplan for Iringol Kavu so that the place is protected from all encroachments. In fact the Kerala Forest Resea-rch Institute, Peechi, had undertaken a detailed study on the grove inclu-ding its rich bio-diverstiy and suggested a green protocol to be followed in the case of the grove. All these must be included in the master plan,” he said.