CANACONA: The Forest Department has started surveying the land in Cotigao panchayat in order to give ownership rights to the locals.
Forest Rights Committee's chairman Ashok Gaonkar, Secretary Datta Velip, local panch Krishna Gaonkar and the officials of the forest department were present during the survey. The survey was a pending demand of tribals from the village who have cashew plantations and other orchards on this land, which legally belongs to the government.
There are 641 pending cases under the Forest Rights Act and only 73 have been settled. Badde ward in the panchayat alone has more than 200 cases. The locals have heaved a sigh of relief for finally their pleas are being heard.