Friday, August 8, 2014

Grand Clearance SALE of Wild Life and Environment is On: Party time for Industrial and Corporate Houses!!

Hi Friends,

After clipping wings of the National Wildlife Board and officially making it illegal, the Govt. of India has put the greatest CLEARANCE SALE for Wild Life and Environment ever since it took charge at the centre.  

Pasting below an article by Nithin Sethi & Somesh Jha in the Business Standard that shows how this illegal committee will decide the fate of 80 national parks, wildlife sanctuaries and tiger reserves just in two days in a meeting which is definitely going to be biased towards the 140 environmentally destructive projects.

The Modi Government, which came to power promising Good Governance has set example of another non-transparent and autocratic functioning by not even making the agenda of the meeting public.  

So, it is party time for Industrial and Corporate Houses and all those who are interested in destroying India's rich biodiversity, wildlife and environment all in the name of development.  

Party time 'Development' folks! Celebrate, your good days have come!!  

Thankfully the tigers, elephants, bears, snakes, monkeys, trees, rivers, fishes and all these species are not voters in the Indian democracy.  Or else they would have died in shame even before the clearances are given, thinking about the senseless and shameless men they voted for!!!

And, I am sure, this is just the beginning of many such moves to come.  

So, best of luck India and Environment....


140 projects on truncated wildlife panel's clearance agenda
Projects impact 80 national parks, wildlife sanctuaries and tiger reserves
Nitin Sethi & Somesh Jha  |  New Delhi  August 9, 2014

The truncated National Wildlife Board's standing committee will appraise about 140 projects that impact around 80 national parks, wildlife sanctuaries and tiger reserves on Monday and Tuesday. It will also appraise proposals to reduce areas of some wildlife sanctuaries.

The 12-member standing committee meeting will be chaired by the Union environment and forests minister Prakash Javadekar, with senior forest officials. The standing committee will have one forest official from a Gujarat government organisation, GEER Foundation, and one retired Gujarat forest official, H S Singh, besides one non-government wildlife expert, R Sukumar, on board, instead of the mandatory eight non-government wildlife and ecology experts.

Business Standard accessed the agenda of the meeting that has not been made public by the ministry. It has been circulated only to members of the standing committee. The environment ministry had earlier made it necessary to disclose the agenda in advance to public to invite comments from others. Besides the members, the standing committee meeting is attended only by senior wildlife officials of states that have sent the proposals.

The proposals include large infrastructure projects such as the 520-Mw Teesta-IV dam in Sikkim, which the previous standing committee members had objected to in unanimity also pointing to other dams that had come up in the state illegally. The long list includes OIL exploration, thermal power projects, highways, power lines, limestone and other mining, irrigation and water supply projects, oil pipelines, limestone mining, border fencing and other defence projects. Some of these projects are to cut through or are in the close proximity of tiger reserves such as Pench in Madhya Pradesh, Periyar in Kerala and Dampa in Mizoram.

Business Standard had reported the controversial appointment of only these three individuals on board the National Board of Wildlife instead of the statutory 15 as provided in the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972. The National Democratic Alliance government has decided to hold the meeting of this toothless board's standing committee to clear a host of old pending and new projects in and around wildlife zones.

After a Supreme Court order, the standing committee is required to appraise all projects that fall within these national parks, sanctuaries and tiger reserves or within a 10-kilometre radius of such areas. The committee is also mandated to set up rules and regulations that govern such clearances besides other policy matters on the subject.

But the ministry now expects the standing committee to move faster on clearing the projects, which include around 35 pending from before and a fresh set of more than 100 proposals that have been proposed before the ministry by the state governments.

The previous meetings of the standing committee under the United Progressive Alliance regime had listed the need to have proper rules for the functioning of the panel, guidelines for linear projects that require wildlife areas and other larger policy concerns. Though these have been put on agenda, sources said, they are unlikely to be addressed in the August 12-13 meeting with all but one non-government expert-member now absent and a host of clearances listed for clearance over the two days.

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