THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The State Cabinet on Wednesday decided to take over 1,036 acres at Kanan Devan Hills village in Devikulam taluk for the development of a tourist zone in Munnar.
The land is currently on lease to Kanan Devan Hills Plantations Company (formerly Tata Tea) in Munnar. An ordinance would be issued for takeover of the land.
Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan told the media after the weekly Cabinet meeting that a township and facilities would be developed there. He declined to say whether the government would grant titles to traders and others who were currently occupying some of the land.
The Cabinet decided to depute a three-member official team for a detailed look into the proposal to notify 17,350 acres in the possession of the Forest Department at Kanan Devan Hills village as reserve forest. The team would consist of the Principal Secretaries of Revenue, Local-Self Government and Forests.
There were differences of opinion between the Forest Department and the Idukki Collector regarding the notification of the land. While the Forest Department said the area in its possession could be straightaway notified, the Collector maintained that the boundaries were not clear and needed to be surveyed and demarcated correctly before the notification.