The Supreme Court observed Tuesday that nine states have not followed the procedure in rejecting the claims of tribals over forest land and said the matter related to eviction of around 11.8 lakh alleged illegal forest dwellers is “important”.
A bench comprising Justices Arun Mishra, M R Shah and B R Gavai asked several states, which have not yet filed affidavits giving details about the procedure adopted in rejecting the claims, to file their responses by September 6.
“Nine states say they have not followed the procedure. We would like to be addressed first on this. It is an important matter,” the bench observed and posted the case for hearing on September 12.
The apex court had earlier stayed its February 13 order directing 21 states to evict 11.8 lakh illegal forest dwellers whose claims over the forest land have been rejected by the authorities.