Relocation of Human Settlements in Wayanad Awaits Government Action

Even though around 10,000 people inside Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary want to relocate outside government inaction is delaying their move out. The central government has sanctioned Rs. 80 crores to move out a third of the population inside Wayanad, but of that only Rs 4.5 crores have been released. According to a report from the Kerala Forest Research Institute (KFRI) there are 110 settlements having 2613 families in the sanctuary. Wild animal attacks are frequent as are retaliatory killings. The Central government’s relocation scheme provides for Rs. 10 lakhs per family, irrespective of their land holdings. Though the amount is not reflective of the high land value outside the sanctuary, many families are still willing to move out. Relocating the settlers would make around 1700 acres available for reversion into forests.

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