The Karnataka High Court has directed the National Wildlife Board (NWB) to take a decision within 10 weeks on the issue of damage to forests and wildlife due to the proposed Hubbali-Ankola borad-gauge railway line. The decision of the Board will be based on the report to be submitted by an expert panel that has been constituted to study the impact of the railway line on the forest and wildlife.
A batch of public interest litigations filed in the High Court has challenged the construction of 168-km broad-gauge railway line between Hubballi and Ankola citing damage it can cause to the forest and wildlife. The decision of the Board will be submitted by the NWB to the division bench of the High Court. The PILs claimed that the railway line passes through the Kali tiger reserve which is part of the eco-sensitive Western Ghats. Nearly 600 hectares of forest land and over two lakh trees will have to make way for the railway line.