Kerala Kaumudi Online
Wednesday, 17 April 2024 2.10 PM IST

Buffer zone issue: CM makes urgent intervention, map that excludes population centres will be published


THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: As the Congress and various organizations have decided to intensify their strike on the buffer zone issue as churches are intensifying their protest similar to the Vizhinjam agitation, the Chief Minister has made an urgent intervention to save the face of the government.

A high-level meeting called by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan yesterday decided to publish the map that completely excludes population centres, seek time in the Supreme Court regarding the case, and hold a meeting of the presidents of the concerned panchayats in the presence of ministers.

Ministers Antony Raju and Roshy Augustine yesterday met Cardinal Mar Baselios Clemis, the major archbishop-catholicos of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church, to seek help in persuading the congregations as directed by the Chief Minister. In Vizhinjam too, the catholicos was the mediator.

The map submitted to the centre by the government in 2021, with the buffer zone being zero km, completely excluding population centres will be published. The time to submit complaints will be extended till January 7. A team consisting of revenue, forest and local department officials and technical experts will be appointed at the panchayat level to verify the complaints received by the panchayat secretaries or the forest department at the field level. A committee of all sections, including people's representatives, will also consider gathering information from the people.

The Advocate General has been tasked with filing an application to extend the date for the transfer of residential area information if the Supreme Court hears the case next month. The Chief Minister may call a press conference today to explain the measures. Ministers K Rajan, AK Saseendran, Roshy Augustine, KN Balagopal, MB Rajesh, Adv General Gopalakrishna Kurup, Chief Secretary Dr VP Joy, Additional Chief Secretaries Dr V Venu, Sharada Muraleeran, Biswanath Sinha and others were present.

Field survey

The field survey was decided to be carried out at a rapid pace by avoiding the population centres. The decision of today's Panchayat President's meeting Field survey will be expedited accordingly.

The last date for receiving complaints about the satellite survey has been extended to January 7.

Panchayat meeting today
An online meeting of the president, secretary, village officers, tehsildars and forest officials of 87 panchayats where buffer zone complaints are raised will be held at 12 noon today. The details of the field verification will be decided in a meeting attended by the Ministers of Local Government, Revenue and Forests.

Satellite image
When the Supreme Court hears the case on January 11, a satellite image measuring the one kilometer buffer zone will be submitted.

Expert Committee

The tenure of B Radhakrishnan's expert committee, which ends on December 30, may be extended by two months.

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