Tribune News Service
New Delhi, July 27
A day after Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar termed as “unfounded and based on misinterpretation” his “suggestions” relating to the contentious draft EIA notification 2020, Chairman of the Standing Committee on Science and Technology, Environment, Forests and Climate Change Jairam Ramesh stated on Monday that his “concerns are founded very much on what is there in black and white”
“You accuse me of misrepresenting the provisions of the Draft EIA 2020 Notification. Please allow me to respond in detail correlating my stated objections with specific provisions contained in the Notification,” Ramesh stated in an in depth four-page letter to Javadekar.
“You say my suggestions (surely you mean my concerns!) are unfounded. All I can say is that these concerns are founded very much on what is there in black and white in the draft EIA 2020 Notification,” added the previous Environment Minister
Regarding essentially the most contentious provision within the draft, the post-facto challenge clearance, Ramesh stated in March 2017 the ministry issued a Gazette notification giving tasks that violate the EIA notification a one-time six-month window to strategy the ministry for publish facto approvals. Since then the ministry has arrange a particular “Violations” EAC that’s recurrently reviewing publish facto approvals, together with two giant mining and actual property tasks and in addition tasks like LG Polymers the place there was a current fuel leak, he stated
The draft notification now accepts that “such violations being recurring in nature” and launched a mechanism of coping with violation instances, Ramesh stated, including that with the notification the federal government is “routinising” the recurrent nature of violations. The Supreme Court has noticed that publish facto clearances usually are not recognised underneath the environmental jurisprudence and are additionally towards the precautionary precept, he added.
Ramesh wrote about his different issues, together with “reducing” public participation in all steps of environmental clearance course of and “doing way” with surroundings influence evaluation all collectively in very many instances of modernisation and growth, referring to particular clauses within the notification. In his earlier letter he claimed that proposed modifications “are not based on audits, assessments and analyses or any research but reflected a mindset that sees environmental regulation as an unnecessary regulatory burden”.
The proposed modifications in environmental clearance course of will “routinely legitimise illegality and promote land grab, not development”, Ramesh stated to which Javdekar advised him on Monday that every one his “suggestions are unfounded and based on misinterpretation”.
The Environment Minister stated the draft notification is saved within the public area for feedback and options.
“Your suggestions are noted. There are 15 more days for suggestions. I will reply to you in detail. Government will finalise after considering various suggestions,. Government decisions are always open for scrutiny by Parliament and Standing Committee,” Javadekar stated.
The notification that goals to overtake the environmental clearance course of has obtained widespread criticism from a number of environmental consultants who’re questioning varied provisions, particularly post-facto challenge clearance, getting rid of the necessary technique of public session for a variety of tasks and rising validity of the surroundings clearances. According to Ramesh the draft “has provisions that will routinely legitimise illegality” and “reduces public participation in all steps of the environment clearance process”.