The Madurai bench of the Madras High Court has recently issued a notice to the State government regarding a PIL seeking an order to restrict the entry of outsiders and vehicles inside the Kalakkad-Mundanthurai Tiger Reserve in Tirunelveli district.
A division bench comprising of Justices SS Sundar and Bharatha Chakravarthy directed the State to file a counter affidavit to the petition filed by V Savithri of Tirunelveli in the Madurai bench of the High Court. She stated that the entry of outsiders and vehicles should be restricted to protect the flora & fauna.
The petitioner stated that, Sorimuthu Ayyanar Temple is located in the Kalakkad-Mundanthurai Reserve in the area between Papanasam and Karaiyar Dam in Nellai District and devotees visit this temple from Nellai and surrounding districts.
However, she further stated that during the festival, a large number of devotees were permitted to enter the reserve and stay at a camping site in violation of the rules. The public failed to follow the rules and the reasonable restrictions imposed and discarded waste along with the Thamirabarani River due to which the pollution affected not only the indigenous people living there but also the flora and fauna.
She stated, the authorities should restrict the entry of outsiders which should not be beyond the carrying capacity notified in the Tiger Conservation Plan.
Therefore, it was stated in the petition that only a certain number of devotees should be allowed into the temple.