Calls to retain Kappatagudda Hills as reserve forest grow shriller

Baldota firm says deep mining won't harm environment

Calls to retain Kappatagudda Hills as reserve forest grow shriller

More than thousand people from the limits of the Kappatagudda forest took part in the public consultation on continuing its reserve forest status, held here on Monday.

People from Gadag, Mundargi and Shirahatti taluks in the limits of the forest took part in the event held at Dambala in Mundargi taluk of the district and attended by Deputy Commissioner Manoj Jain and B J Hosmath, Principal Chief Conservator of Forests.

A total of 164 memorandums were submitted during the meeting. As many as 35 people spoke on the occasion. The Baldota company, which has bagged mining rights in Kappatagudda, is opposed to continuing reserve forest status.

It is said that Kappatagudda is among many places in the country where there are gold deposits. Representatives of the company told the public consultation that deep mining in the area will not have any impact on the environment there.

However, members of people’s organisations said the Baldota representatives should apologise. The deputy commissioner intervened and said that everyone had a right to express his or her opinion. District incharge minister H K Patil said he favoured retaining the reserve forest status.

Siddalinga Swami of the Thontadarya Mutt said the government had so far responded positively to restoring the reserve forest status and that 15 gram panchayats in the Kappatagudda limits too had passed resolutions in this regard.

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