It is “entirely up to” the Centre to implement the report of the Surveyor General of India to demarcate the boundary between Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka passing through the Ballari reserve forest, the Supreme Court said Monday.
The Surveyor General of India filed the final report with regard to the demarcation of the boundary between the two states before a bench of Justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta, which is hearing a matter relating to the Obulapuram Mining Company (OMC).
In its order, the bench noted that the report has “exhaustively” dealt with the boundary demarcation and while Karnataka has accepted the report in full, Andhra Pradesh has “some reservations”. “It is now entirely up to the Union of India to implement the report of the Surveyor General of India and demarcate the boundary between the states of Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka,” the bench said and posted the matter for hearing after six months.
The bench also made it clear that since the territory belonged to the Union of India, the Centre would be responsible for demarcating it. “We are not here to demarcate the boundary of the states. We are not here to say that this land belongs to Karnataka and that land belongs to Andhra Pradesh. It is for the Government of India to do,” the bench said.
In July this year, the apex court had said it was “quite perturbed” to note that the exercise of demarcation of the boundary between the two states, which should have been completed way back in 2013, had not been completed for several years.
The issue of demarcation of the boundary between the two states had cropped up earlier when the court was hearing a matter related to the OMC, which was allowed by the top court to resume mining in the undisputed region in the Anantapur district of Andhra Pradesh. The court had made it clear that the mining by OMC should be carried out only in the undisputed area of the lease granted by the Andhra Pradesh government.