Centre has Agreed to Amend Eco Report: Chandy - The New Indian Express

Centre has Agreed to Amend Eco Report: Chandy

Published: 04th December 2013 08:59 AM

Last Updated: 04th December 2013 09:00 AM

Chief Minister Oommen Chandy on Tuesday said that the centre has agreed to the state’s demand to make amends to the Kasturirangan Committee report on Western Ghats and that village habitats would be excluded from the ecologically fragile land (EFL) criteria.

Chandy had come to the national capital with this special matter.

Though he had plans to meet the Prime Minister, it did not took place due to the PM’s other pre-occupations.

‘’We have already conveyed the Centre our concern about the procedural lapses and has sought to give practical exemptions to places considering the ground realities there,’’ Chandy said.

Almost all political parties in the state had come out against the implementation of the Kasturirangan report.

Identifying 37 per cent of the Western Ghats as ecologically sensitive, the Kasturirangan report had recommended that ‘destructive’ activities such as mining, thermal power, major construction, and some hydel power projects should not be allowed there.

According to the Chief Minister, a  majority of the villages identified by the Kasturirangan committee as ecologically fragile land (EFL) are not in fact ecologically fragile.

‘’We have conveyed the state’s concern that a majority of the villages which have been identified as EFL through remote sensing by the Kasturirangan panel are not so,’’ he said.

He said that the expert committee appointed by the state will have its sitting across the state and will hold discussions with farmers and other organisations concerned.

Defence Minister A K Antony had on Monday met Environment Minister Jayanti Natarajan to convey the same concern.

She has apparently told Antony that the issue would be addressed.

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