Union Minister Prakash Javadekar on Sunday refused to entertain queries regarding three tasks in Goa that he as chairman of the Ministry of Atmosphere Forests and Local weather Change’s standing committee had permitted again in April and as a substitute mentioned that he would ‘research the matter’ if these affected by it submit a memorandum to him.
Javadekar was in Goa as a part of the BJP’s technique to ship out ministers throughout the nation to talk of the advantages of the lately handed contentious farm payments.
Throughout his press convention within the state capital reporters requested questions on the diversion of forest land for the growth of a railway, freeway and a brand new energy line which he had cleared in a gathering held through video convention through the lockdown in April this yr.
However he feigned ignorance on the matters in addition to his ministry’s recommendation to the Karnataka authorities that it will not want an surroundings clearance for the Mhadei river diversion challenge that Karnataka is establishing to Goa’s detriment.
“If I obtain the memorandum, I’ll positively research it,” Javadekar mentioned when requested to answer considerations raised by locals over the diversion of forest land for the tasks.
The standing committee of the ministry granted its approval to the diversion of forest land from notified wildlife sanctuaries in Mollem alongside Goa’s jap frontier with Karnataka for 3 tasks — the doubling of an present railway line between Hubli in Karnataka and Vasco da Gama in Goa, the growth of the nationwide freeway 4A between Belgaum in North Karnataka and Goa and an influence line.
The railway line, by far the largest of the three will come at a price of diversion of 113.857 ha. of forest land from the protected space and felling of 18,541 timber. The second challenge — the 4 laning of the prevailing two lane freeway that was constructed by the Portuguese colonial authorities between Panaji in Goa and Belgavi in Karnataka will price 31.015 ha of forest land and 12,097 timber proposed to be carried out partly by widening the prevailing freeway, however largely by creating utterly new roads on viaduct constructions parallel to the prevailing freeway, wherever it can’t be widened as a result of tough nature of the terrain. Thirdly, a 400KV energy line — three.5 km of which passes via protected forest to reinforce energy provide between Goa and Karnataka to supply extra feed to Goa can also be proposed.
These clearances have now been challenged earlier than the Excessive Courtroom in addition to the Central Empowered Committee constituted by the Supreme Courtroom on grounds that they’ve been cleared in haste and threaten the wealthy biodiversity of the area.
Javadekar was additionally questioned over his ministry’s recommendation to the Karnataka authorities forward of the by-polls in Karnataka final yr that their tasks wouldn’t want an environmental clearance.
“The CM will reply to you on this. The matter is in courtroom and nothing in any respect is going on,” Javadekar mentioned earlier than strolling away.
The MoEF, in a letter to the Karnataka authorities famous that the scheme “doesn’t envisage creating new command space or offering water to struggling present command areas for irrigation. Additionally the challenge doesn’t contain hydroelectric energy era [and] is solely a ingesting water provide scheme and [hence] doesn’t appeal to the provisions of the EIA notification 2006 and its subsequent amendments.
The Congress was fast to accuse the BJP minister of betraying one state in favour of one other.
“Avoiding questions betrayer of Mom Mhadei, makes it clear that @BJP4India in connivance with @BJP4Goa and @goacm bought our Lifeline to Karnataka for Political Positive factors. The faulty @DrPramodPSawant as soon as once more stands uncovered,” State Congress president Girish Chodankar mentioned.