Plea to exempt plantations from Ecologically Fragile Act

Plea to exempt plantations from Ecologically Fragile Act


Kochi: The United Planters Association of Southern India (UPASI) has urged the Kerala Government to exempt the sector from the purview of Ecologically Fragile Land Act.

No other state has such a provision, said UPASI President D P Maheswari while addressing 69th annual conference of the Association of Planters of Kerala (APK) here last night.

As per the Kerala Forests (Vesting and Management of Ecologically Fragile Lands) Act, the government can takeover any land with or without compensation if found ecologically fragile, he said.

Maheswari said plantations play an important role in the state’s economy and it is necessary for the government to provide support.

Many corporates are exiting the sector as they no longer find it lucrative enough, he said.

Maheswari also urged the government to permit the plantations to utilise some portion of the land for commercially-viable activities like planting some other crops or tourism-related activities.

APK Chairman David B King asked the state government to abolish payment of plantation tax which is levied only in Kerala over and above the land tax, he said.