'Coffee estates will not be acquired for laying power line'

It will pass through only 23.16 hectare forest land, says official

Power Grid Corporation officials have clarified that they will not acquire paddy fields or coffee estates for the work of laying high-tension power line project from Mysore to Kozhikode via Kodagu. The farmers in the district need not worry on losing their land.

In the backdrop of resistence from the public for laying the 400 KV high-tension line that passes through South Kodagu, the police and the district administration had stopped the ongoing work on May 22. About 155 km of high-tension power line has been laid so far.

The Centre has invested Rs 460 crore into the work on wheeling power from Kudankulam.
Laying of high-tension wire would connect the wires in Manandavadi in Kerala via Maldare, Palibetta, Thithimathi, Devarapura, Ponnappasanthe, Kanur, Nalkeri and Kutta in South Kodagu.

The power line passes through 23.16 hectare forest land in Kodagu. The remaining area where the line will pass through is owned by private individuals. It passes through around 10 km of coffee estates and 40 km of paddy fields, said the officer to Deccan Herald.

The officer said “though the power line passes through private land, the Power Grid Corporation will not acquire the land. The land will continue to be in the name of the owner. We will take only the land where electric poles will be laid. We will distribute compensation for right to use the land.”

As the power line will be laid at a great height in the paddy fields, the farmers can continue with the farming activities. There would be no harm caused to them,” he added.
Electric poles have been laid at Periyapattana on a land where tobacco is grown, for wheeling of power from Kudankulam.

The officer reiterated that the Power Grid Corporation will not have any ownership of the land.  The government had given its nod to the project only after studying the pros and cons of the project.

The officer said “the power line project will benefit Karnataka than that of neighbouring state Kerala. Out of 1000 MW generated from Kudankulam project, Tamil Nadu will get 463 MW, Karnataka (221 MW), Kerala (133 MW) and Pondicherry (33 MW). In the second phase of the project additional 1000 MW will be generated from Kudankulum and Karnataka will get 520 MW.

The power corporation officer said that a total of 2,621 trees in Kodagu Forest circle will be felled. “Even we feel bad to fell trees. Trees have to be felled to facilitate the work on widening of road as well. Development work are initiated in the interest of the public,” said an officer in the forest department.

The work of laying power line inside Bandipura-Nagarahole is banned as per the Supreme Court directions.

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