Thursday, March 25, 2010

High Court seeks details of quarries

KOCHI: A Division Bench of the Kerala High Court on Wednesday orally directed the State government to file a statement regarding details of licensed and unlicensed quarries functioning near Phantom Rock and the Edakkal cave in Wayanad district. The Bench comprising Chief Justice J. Chelameswar and Justice P.R. Raman also directed the government to state about the actions taken against unlicensed quarries, if any. The directive came on a writ petition filed by Dharmaraj, an environment activist in Wayanad.According to the petitioner, the unbridled granite quarrying in the region would affect the Edakkal cave and the Phantom Rock. As many as 154 quarries were functioning in the district. Of these, only 20 had licences. The remaining quarries were unauthorized ones The heavy blasting in the quarries posed a threat to the cave and the Phantom Rock. It would also causedamage to the biodiversity of the region. In fact, these areas were part of the Nilgiri biosphere. The petitioner

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