Mahesh Kulkarni / Chennai/ Bangalore July 08, 2008, 0:57 IST

The Union ministry of mines has advised the Karnataka government to allot the iron ore-rich mine at Chikkanayakanahalli in Tumkur district to the public sector Kudremukh Iron Ore Company Ltd (KIOCL), a top company official said.

In 1916, the British government declared Kudremukh region as reserved forest to stop slash and burn cultivation practices.

Five people were killed in July 2007 when the police cracked down on "Naxals' in Menasinahadya village in Koppa taluka near Sringeri. People gave varied accounts of the "encounter'. Some villagers told Down To Earth that the police had barged into a villager's house and fired indiscriminately. Some said it was sparked by a gunshot fired on the police.

Kudremukh was notified a national park in 2001. Protests have ensued ever since and the demand for denotification of the park has intensified over the years. The tribals fear they will be forced out of the park and relocated elsewhere. The state's relocation plans, however, haven't taken off yet.

The Western Ghats and Sri Lanka biodiversity hotspot, with its unique assemblages of plant and animal communities and endemic species, is globally important for conserving representative areas of the Earth

Decisions that affect how people use land are among the most fraught that any enlightened society has to grapple with. Two claims that typically come out on the short end of the land-use debate are the claims of indigenous people and claims for non-human species.

These I.As. Are in essence oft shoot of a judgment of this Court in IA 670 of 2001 in Writ Petition (C) 202 of 1995 in K.M. Chinnappa (applicant in T.N. Godavarman Thirumulpad v. Union of India and Others (2002 (10) SCC 606). It related to the question whether functioning of Kudremukh Iron and Ore Company Ltd. (in short 'KIOCL') was having adverse effect on the environment and ecosystem.

The Western Ghats of India, in which Kudremukh Reserve is a part, is assessed to be one of the 25 hotspots identified for bio-diversity conservation in the world. Kudremukh is also the largest protected wildlife reserve of a wet evergreen shola type

Available secondary suspended sediment data from the 1980s was analyzed together with new data collected during 2001

Secondary data as well as the monsoon study presented in this report confirm that not only has the sediment load in the Bhadra River dramatically increased as a result of the mining, but also that a very small fraction of the watershed area, comprising the KIOCL mining site, is by far the major contributor to sediment loads in the Bhadra River.