From the past many days the question of the Baghdad and Asmara firing range near Savgaon is in the news again. This time as the army is building a wall across this space, but because of which the farmers to whom the land belongs cannot access their land.
Deputy Commissioner V. Anbukkumar said the State Government notified and leased 7,149 acres of land at Savagaon and adjoining villages on the outskirts of Belgaum for the firing range, on May 24, 2000 for 20 years. Of this, 1,309 acres belonged to the State government, and the rest to private persons.
The issue of transferring 727 acres of grazing land, the toll naka at Fort Circle and two other sites to the State government was also discussed.
Principal Secretary, Revenue, Ashok Kumar Manoli and Principal Secretary, Law and Justice, K.N. Phaneendra, held talks with the Deputy Commissioner and officials from the Belgaum City Corporation and the Belgaum Urban Development Authority. However the army officials did not turn up for the meeting even when they were told about the same.
Suresh Angadi and Prabhakar Kore said the government had illegally and unconstitutionally notified the lands, which had affected farmers and land owners. The government had no right to notify private lands without first seeking the owners’ consent.
The following land has been given on lease to the army under the said notification:
Boknur – 637.17 acres, Hangarga – 1590.38 acres, Savgaon – 1002.16 acres, Nvagae – 950.38 acres, Bekenhalli – 438.16 acres, Mandoli – 1302.11 acres, Belgundi – 445.18 acres, Bijgarni – 442.9 acres, Boknur – 637.16.
Earlier this month the construction of a compound wall by Army personnel on notified land owned by the State Government, in the Savagaon village.