The state government has come up with detailed guidelines for the officials regarding updating the additional details provided by the public about their properties in the proposed buffer zones around 22 wildlife sanctuaries and national parks.
As per the circular in this regard, the details provided by the public should be uploaded in the mobile application developed by the Kerala State Remote Sensing and Environment Centre (KSREC) after field verification and geotagging the details. For this purpose, the help of volunteers, auxiliary members of Kudumbashree or engineering students who have the necessary technical know-how can be availed.
The secretaries of the respective local bodies have been asked to set up the committees for confirming the details provided by the public, which would include the ward members of the ward that falls in the proposed buffer zone, forest department official and the official from the respective local body.
Help desks will also be set up for the public aid, at libraries, clubs, community halls, anganwadis or other suitable buildings, where the public can visit to allay any doubts regarding the matter. If required, mobile help desks will also be launched in the interior areas.
If any area which is human inhabited or if there are any constructions that have been included in the draft buffer zone map, the details of such constructions should be informed to the forests and wildlife department in the prescribed proforma. The circular also specifically said that all types of constructions irrespective of whether they are legal or illegal should be updated.
The details can be uploaded either in the email address firstname.lastname@example.org or can be sent from the help desks. The last date for submitting the additional details is January 7. The circular has asked the officials to create awareness among the public about the decision to exclude all the human inhabitations and constructions and the need to upload all the details that have been excluded from the existing survey. The government has already published the survey details of what was submitted to the Centre in 2021 as well as which was prepared by the KSREC.
Meanwhile, forests and wildlife minister A K Saseendran once again reiterated that no single individual will have to vacate their land or house in connection with the declaration of buffer zone. All possible steps are being taken to help the farmers and protect their land. The campaign from some corners against the government stand is not good for the state, he said.