Skip to main content

Protests against environment assessment report on N-plant by unaccredited body yields result

Protest against public hearing for N-plant
 By Our Representative
Representations and protests against the environment impact assessment (EIA) report by an unaccredited body, of the proposed nuclear plant at Mithi Virdi in Bhavnagar district in Gujarat, are starting to have an impact. The Union ministry of environment and forests, taking cognizance of the representation from the Parayavaran Suraksha Samiti (PSS), Vadodara, Gujarat, against the project, as also from other "persons, organizations, institutions", has sought clarification from PB Rastogi, director, expert appraisal committee (EAC), Nuclear Power Projects. It wants "necessary action" be taken in case the environmental public hearing (EPH) for EIA was held on March 5.
"It is requested that the matter may kindly be looked into on priority", the letter says, adding, "It may also be clarified whether ElA is prepared by the accredited or non-accredited consultant." Meanwhile, in a followup, the PSS has written to Rastogi to also seek explanation from district collector, Bhavnagar, VP Patel, and regional officer A V Shah of the Gujarat Pollution Control Board for the violation of the basic norms of EPH and the casual manner of taking minutes on it.
"The minutes of the EPH are not in the standard format as they are usually prepared. Instead, they read like a news report, with the proceedings summarized instead of reporting every detail in minutes’ format. The most glaring omission from the minutes of the EPH for instance is the complete omission of the fact that the additional district collector was sitting on dais next to the Bhavnagar district collector who had convened the EPH, which is strictly against the rules", the fresh letter from PSS says, adding, "Additional district collector can sit on dais and chair the EPH if the collector deputes him/her in absence of the collector."
The PSS letter further says, "We can understand that presence of police force, private security guards are not mentioned but presence of several other people sitting on dais is also not mentioned in the minutes, e.g. company officials and others who we could not recognise. Actually, the minutes of the public hearing proceedings should accurately reflect all the views and concerns expressed during the EPH. This is a gross violation of the EIA Notification, 2006."
The PSS said, "This is also to put on record the coercive and terror filled environment in which the EPH was held, to prevent the villagers’ from making free and fair representation. Not only heavy posse of police force but also private security guards were hired at the EPH site, frisking and checking every entrant, and at places questioning villagers and participants about their antecedents."
Written by Krishnakant, Rohit Prajapati and Swati Desai of PSS, it added, "The unnecessary barricades and iron wire fencing between the collector’s dais and the participants area, a first ever arrangement during the EPH in recent times in Gujarat. This has created an atmosphere of coercive tactics that invoked state control and fear over the proceedings of grave public concern."
It recalled, "The collector allowed songs and recordings in favour of the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd (NPCIL) and benefits of nuclear power plant to be broadcast from the public address system arranged by the collectorate. These recordings continued to be played till the EPH proceedings began formally. This is a clear violation of the neutral approach that the collector should have taken on the issue and instead made clear his predisposition on behalf of the NPCIL."

Comments

TRENDING

'Flawed' argument: Gandhi had minimal role, naval mutinies alone led to Independence

Counterview Desk Reacting to a Counterview  story , "Rewiring history? Bose, not Gandhi, was real Father of Nation: British PM Attlee 'cited'" (January 26, 2016), an avid reader has forwarded  reaction  in the form of a  link , which carries the article "Did Atlee say Gandhi had minimal role in Independence? #FactCheck", published in the site satyagrahis.in. The satyagraha.in article seeks to debunk the view, reported in the Counterview story, taken by retired army officer GD Bakshi in his book, “Bose: An Indian Samurai”, which claims that Gandhiji had a minimal role to play in India's freedom struggle, and that it was Netaji who played the crucial role. We reproduce the satyagraha.in article here. Text: Nowadays it is said by many MK Gandhi critics that Clement Atlee made a statement in which he said Gandhi has ‘minimal’ role in India's independence and gave credit to naval mutinies and with this statement, they concluded the whole freedom struggle.

A Hindu alternative to Valentine's Day? 'Shiv-Parvati was first love marriage in Universe'

By Rajiv Shah*   The other day, I was searching on Google a quote on Maha Shivratri which I wanted to send to someone, a confirmed Shiv Bhakt, quite close to me -- with an underlying message to act positively instead of being negative. On top of the search, I chanced upon an article in, imagine!, a Nashik Corporation site which offered me something very unusual. 

Don't agree on domestic subsidies, ensure food security at WTO meet: Farmer leaders

Counterview Desk  The Indian Coordination Committee of Farmers Movements (ICCFM), a top network of farmers’ organizations in India, in a letter to Piyush Goyal, Minister of Commerce and Industry, has asked him to “safeguard food security and sovereignty, even as ensuring peasants' rights" at the 13th Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organization (WTO MC 13), to take place from 26 to 29 February 2024 in Abu Dhabi.

Sharp 61-85% fall in Tech startup funding in India's top 'business-friendly' States

By Rajiv Shah Funding in Tech startups in top business-friendly Indian states has witnessed a major fall, a data intelligence platform for private market research has said in a series of reports it has released this month. Analysing Tech startup data of Telangana, Maharashtra, Delhi NCR, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Kerala, Tracxn Technologies Ltd , the Bengaluru-based research firm, finds that except for Kerala, funding witnessed a fall of anywhere between 61% and 85%.

Students, lawyers, professors detained in Delhi for demonstrating in support of farmers

By Our Representative  About 25 protestors, belonging to the civil rights network, Campaign Against State Repression (CASR), a coalition of over 40 organisations, were detained at Jantar Mantar for holding a demonstration in support of the farmers' stir on Friday. Those detained included students, lawyers and professors, including Prof Nandita Narain and Prof N Sachin. 

Maize, bajra, jute, banana cultivation banned off West Bengal border: Plea to NHRC

Counterview Desk  West Bengal-based human rights defender Kirity Roy, who is secretary, Banglar Manabadhikar Suraksha Manch, and is national convenor of the Programme Against Custodial Torture & Impunity, in a representation to the chairman, National Human Rights Commission, second within few days, has bought to light one more case of trespassing and destruction of a fertile banana plantation by BSF personnel along the Indo-Bangladesh border, stating, despite a written complaint to the police has taken "no initiative".

India second best place to invest, next to UAE, yet there is 'lacks support' for IT services

By Sreevas Sahasranamam, Aileen Ionescu-Somers*  The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is the best place in the world to start a new business, according to the latest annual Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) survey. The Arab nation is number one for the third year in a row thanks to a big push by the government into cutting-edge technology in its efforts to diversify away from oil.

Solar energy funding dips 9% in 2023; 2024 'kicks off' with US$1 billion investment

By Lakshmitha Raj*  Solar energy tech companies have already secured slightly over US$1 billion in funding in 2024 (till Feb 7, 2024) after total funding into Solar Energy companies in India fell 9% to US$1.55B in 2023 from US$1.7B in 2022. A total of 39 $100M+ rounds have been closed till date, with Delhi leading the city-wise funding, followed by Gurugram and Mumbai.

Buddhist shrines were 'massively destroyed' by Brahmanical rulers: Historian DN Jha

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

Mahanadi delta: Aggressive construction in flood plains, reduced fish stock, pollution

By Sudhansu R Das  Frequent natural calamities, unemployment, low farmers’ income, increase in crime rate and lack of quality human resources to strike a balance between growth and environment etc. continue to haunt the state. The state should delve into the root causes of poverty, unemployment and natural calamities.