Udhagamandalam: Activists and VCK cadres have slammed the Nilgiris collector M Aruna for allowing a private player to quarry 28 huge rocks near Katteri Junction on the Coonoor-Mettupalayam highway to set up a petrol bunk.
In a letter to the revenue settlement officer, VCK Nilgiris district secretary Sudhakar questioned why patta distribution to 400 residents in Katteri area could not be initiated, if quarrying could be allowed in the locality.Patta was denied to the local residents citing the vulnerability aspect of the area, says the letter.
“Around 400 families in Katteri area have been requesting the government for patta. If quarrying could be allowed for commercial purposes, why patta can’t be issued for the local residents?” he asked.
Aruna had issued an order on June 15, 2024, stating geotech authorities and the revenue divisional officer, Coonoor, had inspected an extent of 0.50 hectares (survey number C/19/15/3) belonging to N Prema, of Coonoor, and recommended quarrying 28 rocks running to a total width of around 416 meters for setting up a petrol bunk.
As per the court order, there is a blanket ban on quarrying in the Nilgiris. Moreover, Katteri area is identified as one of the vulnerable spots. According to an activist, the district collector has also allowed the private player to use earthmover to level the land for setting up the petrol bunk.

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