Greens demand revision of Wayanad package

‘Half the project amount should be allocated for eco-restoration of district’

Environmental organisations in the district have urged the government to revise the projects drafted under the Wayanad package announced by Chief Ministry Pinarayi Vijayan to rejuvenate the post-flood agriculture, economy, and ecological sectors of the district.

Though Mr. Vijayan had announced the ₹7,000-crore package, bureaucrats were trying to sabotage it by allocating a huge amount for projects like the proposed Anakkampoyil-Meppadi tunnel road, development of tourism and construction of roads, said the Wayanad Prakruthi Samrakshana Samithi in a letter to the Chief Minister.

Such projects, which could lead to corruption, would destroy the district, said the organisation. Hence, half the project amount should be allocated for eco-restoration of the district, it added.

More than 3,000 tribal families in the district were landless and homeless, but the package had no mention of them. While officials had allocated ₹250 crore for the construction of buildings and purchasing vehicles for the Forest Department, they had allocated only ₹100 crore for projects aimed at mitigating man-animal conflict, said the Samithi, adding that a sum of ₹1,000 crore should be allocated for the issue.

There were no provisions for making value-added products from farm produce, except Robusta coffee. As climate change would directly affect farmers, plantation workers and tribespeople in ecologically fragile regions like Wayanad, the package should be revised by including projects for their betterment, added the Samithi.

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