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NGT orders forestland restoration in Odisha capital city

Cracking whip on forest land encroachment in Odisha’s capital city, the National Green Tribunal (NGT) has directed the Odisha government to reclaim 18 acre patch of forest land illegally occupied by Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology (KIIT) and Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences.

NGT in an interim ruling asked the chief secretary of Odisha government to initiate necessary steps in conformity with legal procedures to evict the occupiers from the forest land.

 The land needs to be taken possession of Odisha forest department for maintaining ecology of Bhubaneswar, the sprawling capital city of Odisha, NGT observed.

Rights activist Subash Mohaptra had earlier drawn the attention of NGT alleging that officials and authorities of KIIT and KISS had formed an unholy nexus to grab the forestland.

Divisional Forest Officer, Chandaka Forest Division, Khurda Collector and Forests & Environment Department Secretary were asked to demarcate the encroached forest land for reclamation of the land.
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