Madhya Pradesh steps in to assist Andaman get new tasks going


Shubhadeep Choudhury

Tribune News Service

Kolkata, September 10

In a novel and praiseworthy step, Madhya Pradesh has prolonged a serving to hand to the Andaman and Nicobar Islands by providing land for afforestation in lieu of diversion of forest land for infrastructure constructing work within the Union Territory.

The Bay of Bengal archipelago has a protection of 94 per cent of the realm beneath forest, water our bodies, inter-tidal zone and deemed forest. Only 7.71 sq km is on the market for any development.

Compensatory Afforestation (CA) over an equal space of non-forest land or twice the realm of degraded forest land is likely one of the obligatory necessities for approval of proposals for diversion of forest land for a non-forestry goal beneath the Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980.

For any new infrastructure growth venture, the clause relating to CA poses an issue as barren land is solely not accessible within the islands. The islands’ administration had taken up the difficulty with Government of India for rest and consequently, the GoI determined that in case of states or UTs having forest cowl in extra of 75 per cent, requisite land for CA needn’t be supplied inside the state or UT itself.

The land could possibly be organized in another UT or state.

“But linking with willing forest deficient state or UT was a concern again for the administration,” Asha Chaudhary Malhotra, spokesperson of the Andaman and Nicobar islands administration advised The Tribune over the cellphone from Port Blair.

Malhotra stated the administration urged the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change to inform appropriate states for enterprise compensatory afforestation.

“The administration has recently drawn up projects worth Rs 33,500 crore under the National Infrastructure Pipeline. The concept development plans for the holistic development of Little Andaman and Great Nicobar Islands with mega projects, under the aegis of the Islands Development Agency, are also under active consideration. The land for compensatory afforestation is a pre-requisite for implementation of most of these projects in the Islands,” Malhotra stated.

The administration vigorously approached varied state governments for consent to hold out compensatory afforestation in lieu of forest land diverted for growth tasks within the Islands.

“We are very glad to share this with everyone that the government of Madhya Pradesh has accepted our request and given consent for compensatory afforestation work in 650 sq km in the degraded forest area of the state. This would enable and expedite transformational infrastructure developmental projects in the Islands,” Malhotra stated.



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