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#Kodagu, a small hill district in South Karnataka, has been always called the Scotland of India. A district filled with natural beauty. A most sought location for tourism, one of the largest coffee, pepper and cardamom growing regions of the country and also, home to the ethnic minority community of the Kodava's.
Kodava's are a race that has always been called the brave! having given many of its children as sacrifices in the armed forces, so that the nation can sleep in peace at night. Kodava's are also known for their active participation in sports and have given the country many of its renowned sportsmen & sportswomen.
Today, this land of the brave has been hit by the worst bout of rains, which looks like heaven opened its flood gates. dozens of villages that were happily thriving on their land, today have been washed off the map. Houses that were homes, have been brought down to dust. People have been displaced from their lives... let alone their land.
Questions arise as to what led to this devastation? This question cannot have a political, religious, caste based answer... coz none of them have any connection to what has fallen upon Kodagu. Ask the people of the land, and they will tell you why this has happened. There are largely 4 reasons which lead to this calamity...
1. Timber Mafia - these are people who have monitory and physical clout, and play the system to smuggle timber from the precious land of Kodagu. Many trees which take ages to grow and have their roots deep into the core of the earth, get chopped for the gain of these mafia who thrive by using money and physical power to lobby departments to have it their way.
2. Sand Mafia - these are the people again who have monitory and physical clout to play the system to their benefit and take away truck loads for sand from Kodagu's river beds. This again is a threat to the very ecosystem of Kodagu.
3. Mining Mafia - Granite mining on the slopes of the western ghats is another cause to this calamity. Miners dig deep into the rock formations which are like foundations of our homes to hills. this in turn makes the hill week at the foundation and causes massive landslides.
4. Unregulated Tourism - over the last decade, tourism has exploded in Kodagu. Homestays being the fad thing of today, they have mushroomed at an alarming pace. There probably are more homestays today than homes itself. These homestays have been build on hill sides which is a matter of concern.
With this petition, I urge a ban on timber felling, Sand excavation and mining in the district of Kodagu.
Request that this petition be taken seriously towards the future of the district of Kodagu and let us join hands to save our children.
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