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Deemed forest: SC nod awaited, BSY govt considers releasing 67% of it

  • Posted By
    10Pointer
  • Categories
    Environment
  • Published
    16th Nov, 2020

Context

  • Can the Karnataka government denotify 6.64 lakh hectares of 9.94 lakh hectares of deemed forest land in the state without clearance from the Supreme Court? 

Key highlights of the news

  • The Supreme Court has been monitoring enforcement of the forest Act since its intervention in the landmark T N Godavarman Thirumulpad vs Union of India case of 1995. 
  • A committee of experts set up after the Supreme Court ruling in the Godavarman case had identified 43.18 lakh hectres as forest land in Karnataka for conservation, with 9.94 lakh hectares as ‘deemed forest’.

What is deemed forest?

  • A deemed forest is a land with the characteristics of a forest and fitting “the dictionary meaning” of one “irrespective of ownership’’.
  • These are thickly wooded areas recommended to be taken over by the government for preservation as forests but not notified.

What people are demanding?

  • As many farmers have been affected the reclassification of the deemed forests is demanded
  • There are also a lot of claims for mining licences in these areas, which are rejected on grounds of these being deemed forests

Criticism over notification of deemed forest

  • It is said that area was notified without considering whether it is needed for grazing, building a hospital and other purposes.