THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The CPM has said that eco-sensitive zones around protected forests should exclude inhabited areas. The party made its stance clear in the wake of protests by people residing around national parks and wildlife sanctuaries after the Supreme Court mandated one-km eco-sensitive zones.
CPM state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan said the party has urged the government to call a high-level meeting to hold discussions and hear the grievances of all the stakeholders on exempting dwelling places and agricultural land from the limits of such zones. “If required, the government should enact the necessary legislation to address people’s concerns,” Kodiyeri said.
The party-state secretary said the state government will take all necessary steps to ensure the interests of persons affected by the apex court directive are taken care of. Further, the CPM state secretary said the LDF government had moved a proposal before the Centre to exempt inhabited areas and agricultural land from eco-sensitive zones. He said the forest department had also decided to move the apex court in that regard.