Why are lands acquired from farmers barren? SC asks states
The Supreme Court has issued notices and sought responses from the Centre and the state governments--Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and Punjab--over the forceful acquisition of fertile agricultural lands from farmers and tribals which remain barren and abandoned or are in the hands of private real estate developers. This is a legal victory for the West Bengal’s farmers in case of Singur land acquisition. The committee which had filed the petition for this case has also recommended conducting a social impact study on the farmers who had lost their land.
Panel recommends Ken-Betwa river link for green nod
The environment ministry’s expert advisory committee has recommended the Ken-Betwa river linking project for environment clearance. The project has been cleared with nine conditions, one of which is to record the impacts on wildlife due to the habitat change from the construction. The link aims to transfer water from the Ken river in Madhya Pradesh to the Betwa basin in the parched Bundelkhand, Uttar Pradesh and will submerge a total of 5,258 hectares of forest land.
NGT issues notice to Centre, UP government over e-waste in Ramganga
The National Green Tribunal has sought responses from the environment ministry, urban development, Central Pollution Control Board and Uttar Pradesh government over illegal processing of electronic waste on the banks of Ramganga. The NGT has been informed that a large number of people are involved in unscientific dismantling, crude chemical leaching, burning of wires or electrical waste on the river banks. Along with this, it has also been informed that both chromium and cadmium levels have been found higher than the prescribed standards in the river water.
Panel defers clearance to coal washery project in Odisha
The expert appraisal committee has decided to defer granting green nod to Coal India’s Mahanadi Coalfields Ltd (MCL) for setting up a Rs 334.72 crore coal washery in Sundergarh district, Odisha. The panel has asked the company to obtain the forest clearance first and has also sought more information before giving clearance. The coal washery with a capacity of 10 million tonnes per annum is being planned in an area of 43.90 hectares, which comprises 29.41 hectares of forest land.
Uttarakhand fails to implement Forest Rights Act 2006
Owing to the model code of conduct came into force in December 2009, the Uttarakhand government has been unable to process any claims over forests under the Forest Rights Act 2006 adopted by the government in 2008. Since then, as on October 2016, 182 claims over forests have been filed of which one claim was rejected while the rest continues to be under process.
This is a roundup of important policy matters from January 9 - 15, 2017. Also, read the news this week.