HC raps Forest Dept for delay in despatch of letter

Joint survey of State-Andhra borders



The HC had ordered the joint survey, following a petition over alleged encroachment of the State forest land by BJP Minister G Janardhana Reddy-owned Obalapuram Mines Ltd and said that the report should be submitted on June 8.

When the matter came up before the court on Monday, Assistant Solicitor General Aravind informed the court that the survey was scheduled for May 22.  But, the forest department had dispatched the request letter, dated May 13, on May 26. The same was received two days later.  Hence, the Survey of India could not participate in the proceedings.

Following this, the division bench headed by Chief Justice P D Dinakaran took the forest department to task and warned of serious consequences if such an act is repeated. It also extended the time for submitting the report by four weeks.

The forest department told the court that the survey could not be completed in the absence of officials from the Survey of India.

Petitioner T Narayana Reddy had moved the High Court alleging that the Obalapuram Mines Ltd secured a mining licence in Andhra Pradesh and had encroached upon his mining area at Tumti village in Sandur taluk of Karnataka's Bellary district by removing the border pillar.

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