Skip to main content

National Green Tribunal asks Gujarat government not to allow destruction of mangroves without its nod

Dead mangroves at Hazira port
By Our Representative
In what is being described by the Conservation Action Trust (CAT), a non-government organisation, as a "landmark judgment", the National Green Tribunal (West Zone) has, in an order dated December 9, 2013, barred the Gujarat government to allow destruction of mangroves in any part of the state without the prior approval of the tribunal. The tribunal order came in response to the CAT’s application No 35 before it to prevent unprecedented mangroves destruction it found was being carried out in Gujarat in name of industrial development.
CAT is a non-profit organization formed to protect the environment, particularly wildlife and forests with a key focus on mangroves, and its main purpose is to educate and enlighten decision makers and the public about the importance of forests for our survival. Based in Mumbai, one of the major thrust areas is advocating the role of forests in protecting water security of the country while simultaneously acting as major carbon sinks thus mitigating the effects of climate change.
Kandla port: Reclamation on dead mangroves
Working closely with forest departments and other NGOs that are fighting to protect nature and natural resources, among its campaigns include actively protecting the mangroves in and around Mumbai. CAT statement said, “During our site visit in July 2013 we observed rampant destruction of mangroves at three locations that were visited by us – Navlakhi, Tuna Bandar and Hazira Port.”
CAT said, “We complained about the destruction of mangroves to the Forest Department and Environment Department of the State of Gujarat. We also wrote to the chief minister of Gujarat regarding destruction of mangroves. However, no action was taken to stop the destruction of mangroves and the illegal reclamation.”
CAT underlined, “We also discovered that the district collector of Rajkot has granted 5,000 acres of forest land covered with mangroves to a private individual for salt panning. This land harbours mangroves and is part of the area which has been declared as reserved forest by a Notification dated May 19, 1966. No clearances were obtained either under the Forest Conservation Act 1980 or under the Coastal Regulation Zone Notification, 1991.”
Destroyed mangroves near Navlakhi port
CAT added, “Following our complaint to the Ministry of Environment & Forests (MoEF), Government of India, a site visit was organised by the regional office of MoEF at Bhopal on August 13, 2013. A team comprising of SK Bhandari (chief conservator of forests, MoEF Bhopal) and Dr Mehrotra (director, MoEF, Bhopal) conducted a site visit, along with officers of the Gujarat forest department, the Gujarat Pollution Control Board and the Gujarat Maritime Board. We obtained the site visit report under RTI which clearly mentions destruction of mangroves at Navlakhi.”
Following this, CAT said, it conducted “another site visit in August 2013”. This time too it observed “rampant destruction of mangroves around the Kandla Port and the area in between Kandla Port and the Tuna Bandar. We filed a complaint regarding this to the forest department of Gujarat. No action was taken by the Gujarat government to stop this destruction.”

Comments

TRENDING

Vaccine nationalism? Covaxin isn't safe either, perhaps it's worse: Experts

By Rajiv Shah  I was a little awestruck: The news had already spread that Astrazeneca – whose Indian variant Covishield was delivered to nearly 80% of Indian vaccine recipients during the Covid-19 era – has been withdrawn by the manufacturers following the admission by its UK pharma giant that its Covid-19 vector-based vaccine in “rare” instances cause TTS, or “thrombocytopenia thrombosis syndrome”, which lead to the blood to clump and form clots. The vaccine reportedly led to at least 81 deaths in the UK.

'Scientifically flawed': 22 examples of the failure of vaccine passports

By Vratesh Srivastava*   Vaccine passports were introduced in late 2021 in a number of places across the world, with the primary objective of curtailing community spread and inducing "vaccine hesitant" people to get vaccinated, ostensibly to ensure herd immunity. The case for vaccine passports was scientifically flawed and ethically questionable.

'Misleading' ads: Are our celebrities and public figures acting responsibly?

By Deepika* It is imperative for celebrities and public figures to act responsibly while endorsing a consumer product, the Supreme Court said as it recently clamped down on misleading advertisements.

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. 

US 'frustrated' with India’s discomfort: Maritime exercise in South China Sea

By Vijay Prashad*  In early April 2024, the navies of four countries -- Australia, Japan, the Philippines, and the United States -- held a maritime exercise in the South China Sea. Australia’s Warramunga, Japan’s Akebono, the Philippines’ Antonio Luna, and the United States’ Mobile worked together in these waters to strengthen their joint abilities and -- as they said in a joint statement  -- to “uphold the right to freedom of navigation and overflight and respect for maritime rights under international law.” 

Magnetic, stunning, Protima Bedi 'exposed' malice of sexual repression in society

By Harsh Thakor*  Protima Bedi was born to a baniya businessman and a Bengali mother as Protima Gupta in Delhi in 1949. Her father was a small-time trader, who was thrown out of his family for marrying a dark Bengali women. The theme of her early life was to rebel against traditional bondage. It was extraordinary how Protima underwent a metamorphosis from a conventional convent-educated girl into a freak. On October 12th was her 75th birthday; earlier this year, on August 18th it was her 25th death anniversary.

Palm oil industry 'deceptively using' geenwashing to market products

By Athena*  Corporate hypocrisy is a masterclass in manipulation that mostly remains undetected by consumers and citizens. Companies often boast about their environmental and social responsibilities. Yet their actions betray these promises, creating a chasm between their public image and the grim on-the-ground reality. This duplicity and severely erodes public trust and undermines the strong foundations of our society.

India 'not keen' on legally binding global treaty to reduce plastic production

By Rajiv Shah  Even as offering lip-service to the United Nations Environment Agency (UNEA) for the need to curb plastic production, the Government of India appears reluctant in reducing the production of plastic. A senior participant at the UNEP’s fourth session of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee (INC-4), which took place in Ottawa in April last week, told a plastics pollution seminar that India, along with China and Russia, did not want any legally binding agreement for curbing plastic pollution.

No compensation to family, reluctance to file FIR: Manual scavengers' death

By Arun Khote, Sanjeev Kumar*  Recently, there have been four instances of horrifying deaths of sewer/septic tank workers in Uttar Pradesh. On 2 May, 2024, Shobran Yadav, 56, and his son Sushil Yadav, 28, died from suffocation while cleaning a sewer line in Lucknow’s Wazirganj area. In another incident on 3 May 2024, two workers Nooni Mandal, 36 and Kokan Mandal aka Tapan Mandal, 40 were killed while cleaning the septic tank in a house in Noida, Sector 26. The two workers were residents of Malda district of West Bengal and lived in the slum area of Noida Sector 9. 

Dadi, poti discuss 'injustice' under 10 yr Modi rule: Video campaign goes viral

By Our Representative  Watan Ki Raah Mein, a civil society campaign of the Samvidhan Bachao Nagrik Abhiyan, has released a short video conversation on social media of an exchange of letters between a dadi and her poti discussing poverty, unemployment, corruption and women’s safety. The letters also raise the question of  suppression of our fundamental rights of speech, expression and justice.