Ask industry to give double area in lieu of forest land: HC to Gujarat govt | Ahmedabad News

AHMEDABAD: In an vital order, the Gujarat excessive courtroom on Thursday mentioned that the state authorities should ask the industry to present double the area of non-forest land in compensation for the forest area allotted to it.
It exhorted the federal government not to accept an equal area of land, asserting that whereas the federal government should facilitate improvement, but it surely should additionally make sure that forest conservation isn’t sacrificed.
The bench of Justice J B Pardiwala and Justice V D Nanavati insisted on strict implementation of the state authorities’s choice to guarantee satisfactory compensation for allotted forest land to industry. “The user agency must be asked to provide double the land area to compensate for the loss of forest land instead of an equivalent area of land,” the court ordered.
The court’s observation came in connection with a PIL taking exception to state government’s decision to allot 20.76-hectare forest land in Hazira to ArcelorMittal Nippon Steel Ltd (AMNS). The proposal for land allotment was mooted by Essar Steel Ltd, which was later taken over by AM/NS.
Petitioner Biren Padhya had objected to land allotment on the ground that the company was allotted two parcels of forest land earlier in Hazira, but it had not fulfilled certain conditions imposed on it. The forest department had even lodged an FIR for construction and improper use of forest land. Despite non-fulfilment of conditions in earlier cases, the government once again agreed to part with the forest land. The petitioner’s advocate Abhisst Thaker also took exception to several other proposals for forest land allotment saying that some of them were made by real estate developers.
The bench of Justice J B Pardiwala and Justice V D Nanavati took a serious view of the matter and asked the state government to ensure that forest land should be allotted strictly in accordance with the policy and only to the industries with credentials and not indiscriminately.
‘Development, but not at cost of forests’
Only genuine proposals of the existing port-based industries at Hazira for industrial/ port infrastructure, i.e, environment-friendly storage and transportation of gaseous, liquid and solid raw materials and products of Hazira industrial area should receive priority in accordance with the policy of the state,” the Gujarat excessive courtroom mentioned.
In this case, in compensation for the allotment of 20.78 hectares of forest land, the corporate was required to undertake afforestation on an equal parcel of land in a non-forest area at Palitana in Bhavnagar, which is a lion hall.
The land was to be transferred and mutated in favour of the forest division.
The different circumstances included that the corporate should present 110 hectares of non-forest land at Sanada village in Palitana, which additionally falls in the lion hall area.
As half of its CSR, it has to deposit 2.5 occasions the market worth for the area with the Lion Conservation Society.
Besides, the corporate was to undertake penal compensatory afforestation over 41.52 hectares of degraded forest in Songadh, Tapi district.

, 2021-10-22 06:27:05

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