Tuesday 23 Jul 2024

Govt to HC: Settlement of forest rights by July 24

THE GOAN NETWORK | JUNE 14, 2024, 12:42 AM IST


The State government has informed the Bombay High Court at Goa that claims under Forest Rights and Scheduled Tribes Rights for residents of the Mhadei and nearby wildlife sanctuaries will be settled by July 24, 2024.

This submission, made on June 10, was in response to a contempt petition filed by the Goa Foundation against the Goa government for failing to notify the tiger reserve.

During the hearing before the Division Bench of Justices M S Karnik and Valmiki Menezes, Advocate Norma Alvares, representing the petitioner, stated that the court had issued several directions, including the notification of the tiger reserve, which is currently pending before the Supreme Court.

Advocate General Devidas Pangam informed the court that eight additional anti-poaching camps have already been established and that the government is in the process of complying with the directions dated July 24, 2023.

On July 24, 2023, the High Court directed the government to notify a tiger reserve in the Mhadei Wildlife Sanctuary and other contiguous areas within three months and to determine and settle the rights and claims of Scheduled Tribes and other forest dwellers within a year while hearing a Public Interest Litigation filed by Goa Foundation.

“It is submitted that the State Government is directed to comply with... the judgment and order for determining and settling the rights and claims of the Scheduled Tribes and other forest dwellers following the law as expeditiously as possible within 12 months from the date of the judgment and order. The 12-month period is expiring on July 24, 2024,” the Court observed while accepting the submission by the AG. The Bench has scheduled the next hearing for the contempt application on July 30.

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