Skip to main content

Senior activists wonder how can Kalpasar start when no environmental or CRZ clearance has been obtained

By Our Representative
Senior activists of Gujarat have alleged that the Narendra Modi government wants to begin work on the controversial Kalpasar project, which seeks to dam the Gulf of Khambhat, despite the fact that it has not yet complied with the Government of India's Environmental Impact Assessment Notification on September 14, 2006. The project falls under Category ‘A’, 1 (c), i.e. a river and valley project which requires prior environmental clearance from the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) on the recommendations of Expert Appraisal Committee (EAC) constituted by the GoI.
In a statement, the activists Indukumar Jani, Mahesh Pandya and Gautam Thaker said, “Summary record of discussions of the 38th and 39th meeting of expert appraisal committee (AEC) held on June 30, 2010 and July 17, 2010 in New Delhi constituted under the provision of the EIA notification of 2006 shows that the proponents of the project did not attend any of its meetings." Also, the "summary record of discussion of the 41st meeting of EAC held on September 24-25, 2010 in New Delhi also showed that the committee considered the documentation provided for allowing scoping highly inadequate wand wanting it to be more holistic.”
The statement says, while the ninth meeting of the Expert Advisory Group (EAG), Kalpasar, held at Ahmedabad on July 17-19, 2012 concluded that the EAG had accepted the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute’s (NEERI’s) report on Environmental Impact and Risk Assessment (EIRA),which is an environment clearance requirement, so far there has been no progress thereafter. In fact, the report has not been submitted to the MoEF, which should give additional terms of reference, if required.
"The whole process of environmental clearance may require 270 days if all formalities / procedures are followed correctly as per EIA notification, 2006. In addition to this the project has to obtain Consent to Operate from State Pollution Control Board only after which tenders can be floated”, the statement underlines.
“Even then, while speaking at the Krishi Mahostav on May 18, 2013, Modi spoke of Rs.3,400 crore project for building Narmada water reservoir between Kevadiya colony to Bhadbhut barrage, linking it with Kalpsar project, while on May 5, 2013, he said that a tender for Rs 4,000 crore works on Bhadbhut barrage would be floated soon”, the statement says, wondering, “How can he give such irresponsible statement to misguide public by giving two different figures with a difference of Rs 600 crore for the same project?”
The statement further accuses the government of misleading the public. “At the Gujarat legislative assembly, on March 13, 2013, answering a starred question, MLA from Mansinh Chauhan asked questions regarding Kalpasar project to the CM, to which he was told that 80 per cent of EIA had been completed and environmental and CRZ clearances are in their last phase and statutory clearances required for the project will be obtained at the earliest”, the statement says.
“At the same time, in the same assembly session, the government stated that land acquisition has already been started whereas in the Kalpasar website it is written that creation of this fresh water reservoir does not involve any land acquisition or rehabilitation of people. Both of these statements are contradictory”, it adds. “Again in the same session, it was stated that construction of Bhadbhut barrage would start in 2013-2014. The question is: How constructed can be started without environmental or CRZ clearances?”
---
For more details, click HERE

Comments

TRENDING

132 Gujarat citizens, including IIM-A faculty, others declare solidarity with Kashmiris

Counterview Desk
A week after it was floated, 132 activists, academics, students, artists and other concerned citizens of Gujarat, backed by 118 living in different parts of India and the world, have signed a "solidarity letter" supporting the people of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), who, it claims, have been silenced and held captive in their own land. The signatories include faculty members and scholars of the prestigious Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad (IIM-A).

Bharat Ratna nominee ‘joined hands’ with British masters to 'crush' Quit India

By Shamsul Islam*
The Quit India Movement (QIM), also known as ‘August Kranti' (August Revolution), was a nation-wide Civil Disobedience Movement for which a call was given on August 7, 1942 by the Bombay session of the All-India Congress Committee. It was to begin on August 9 as per Gandhi's call to 'Do or Die' in his Quit India speech delivered in Bombay at the Gowalia Tank Maidan on August 8. Since then August 9 is celebrated as August Kranti Divas.

Gujarat's incomplete canals: Narmada dam filled up, yet benefits 'won't reach' farmers

By Our Representative
Even as the Gujarat government is making all out efforts to fill up the Sardar Sarovar dam on Narmada river up to the full reservoir level (FRL), a senior farmer rights leader has said the huge reservoir, as of today, remains a “mirage for the farmers of Gujarat”.
In a statement, Sagar Rabari of the Khedut Ekta Manch (KEM), has said that though the dam’s reservoir is being filled up, the canal network remains complete. Quoting latest government figures, he says, meanwhile, the command area of the dam has been reduced from 18,45,000 hectares (ha) to 17,92,000 ha.
“According to the website of the Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Ltd, which was last updated on Friday, while the main canal, of 458 km long, has been completed, 144 km of ranch canals out of the proposed length of 2731 km remain incomplete.
Then, as against the targeted 4,569 km distributaries, 4,347 km have been constructed, suggesting work for 222 km is still pending. And of the 15,670 km of minor canal…

Ceramic worker dies: 20,000 workers in Thangadh, Gujarat, 'risk' deadly silicosis

By Our Representative
Even as the country was busy preparing for the Janmashtami festival on Saturday, Hareshbhai, a 46-year-old ceramic worker from suffering from the fatal lung disease silicosis, passed away. He worked in a ceramic unit in Thangadh in Surendranagar district of Gujarat from 2000 to 2016.
Hareshbhai was diagnosed with the disease by the GCS Medical College, Naroda Road, Ahmedabad in 2014. He was found to be suffering from progressive massive fibrosis. He is left behind by his wife Rekha sister and two sons Deepak (18) and Umesh (12),
The death of Hareshbhai, says Jagdish Patel of the health rights group Peoples Training and Research Centre (PTRC), suggests that silicosis, an occupational disease, can be prevented but not cured, and the Factory Act has sufficient provisions to prevent this.
According to Patel, the pottery industry in the industrial town of Thangadh has evolved for a long time and locals as well as migrant workers are employed here. There are abou…

Cess for Gujarat construction workers: Spending less than 10%; no 'direct help' to beneficiaries

By Our Representative
While the Gujarat government’s Building and Other Construction Workers Welfare Board, set up in 2004, as of March 31, 2019, has collected a total cess of Rs 2,097.62 crore from the the builders, it has spent less than 10% -- Rs 197.17 crore. And, as on May 31, 2019, the total cess collection has reached Rs 2,583.16 crore, said a statement issued by Bandhkam Majur Sagathan general secretary Vipul Pandya.
Pointing out that just about 6.5 lakh out of 20 lakh workers have been registered under the board, Pandya said, vis-à-vis other states, Gujarat ranks No 13th in the amount spent on the welfare of the construction workers, while 11th in the amount collected.
And while the builders are obliged to pay just about 1% of the total cost of their project, the calculation of the cess is flawed: It is Rs 3,000 per square yard; accordingly, Rs 30 per square yard is collected. “Had the cess been collected on the real construction cost, it would have been at least Rs 7,000 cr…