Friday, January 14, 2011

Coast Guard cautions people against trespassing near Karwar beach Land transfer

Coast Guard cautions people against trespassing near Karwar beach Land transfer

The action of the Uttara Kannada district administration of handing over the middle part of the Karwar beach to the Defence department has kicked up a new controversy. The Defence department has put up a board restricting entry to the beach.
Fourteen acres of revenue land on Karwar beach was handed over to the Coast Guard to build an office there, said K.. Narasimhamurthy, Additional Deputy Commissioner of Uttara Kannada.
What surprised people was the secrecy maintained by the Revenue Department officials on the whole process, said Rajesh Nayak, president of the Karwar Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) unit. After acquisition of the major part of the beaches in Karwar for the Seabird project, the people of Karwar were left with a small stretch of the beach. The Revenue Department officials should have consulted the public, fishermen and the social and political organisations before handing it over. What was the reason for secrecy that they maintained in the whole deal, said Mr. Nayak. Gaja Surangekar, a fishermen leader, said the district administration had cheated the fishermen who had been using the beaches for fishing for centuries. He said that the people came to know about the transfer of land only on Tuesday when the signboards were put up. “We will launch an agitation and never allow them to snatch our right to use the sea shore,” he said.
Ratan Durgekar, a morning jogger on the beach, criticised the officials of the district administration. He said when thousands of acres of land acquired for project Seabird still remained unused in Karwar, what was the necessity to hand over a new piece of land in the civilian area to the Defence department? He said the people living around the Seabird project area faced several restrictions. A Defence office in civilian area would create more problems for the citizens of Karwar. The Tourism Department was showcasing Karwar beach to attract tourists. About Rs. 5 crore project was prepared by the district administration itself to develop the beach. Officials of the National Highway Department, who worked on the four-lanes highway that passed through the same area were unaware of land transfer. The area where the signboard was put by the Coast Guard covered forestland.
A senior Forest Department official pleaded his ignorance about this. He said that part of land on the beach belonged to the Forest Department and survey no. 108 on the beach was a forest as per records.
The projects like “green wall” on Karwar beach was taken up by the Forest Department to stop the sea erosion, sea breeze and sand accumulation on the road. Now the Defence area in forestland might create problems to implement these projects, he said.
Many beach lovers, environmentalists and fishermen organisations have threatened to launch agitation against the district administration for handing over the beach area to the Coast Guard.

1 comment:

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