Kasturirangan report on Western Ghats
The Committee, which keeps track of assurances given by Ministers on the floor of the Upper House while replying to queries from parliamentarians, flagged these issues in its latest report presented.
Kasturirangan committee was set up to study the Gadgil committee report on the Western Ghats.
The committee examined 62 assurances during its deliberations with various State Governments and other organisations. It visited Pune, Mumbai, Chennai and Bengaluru, before finalising its report.
- Over 56,000 square kilometres of ecologically sensitive areas (ESA) in the Western Ghats could not be earmarked as ‘no-go’ zones due to State governments’ ‘insensitivity’, a parliamentary committee.
- The panel has urged the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change to constitute a committee to address the issues and grievances of local people.
- The recent catastrophic monsoon floods in Kerala and parts of Karnataka should serve as alarm bells for administrations in the six States of Goa, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka that have failed to mark ecologically sensitive areas in the Western Ghats.
- The panel had examined issues regarding the categorisation of Western Ghats parts as Ecologically Sensitive Areas (ESAs) as per the recommendations of two different committees led by Madhav Gadgil and K. Kasturirangan.
- The Committee has observed that despite three draft notifications issued over four years for earmarking the ESAs, the six States could not be brought on board for action. As a result, over 56,000 sq km of ESA could not be earmarked as ‘no-go’ zones for polluting activities.
- Largescale de-forestation, mining and construction activities were continuing unabated, hurting the ecology of the Western Ghats.
- Insensitivity towards ecology of Western Ghats was making the six States of Western Ghats vulnerable to floods and landslides.
- The committee examined 62 assurances during its deliberations with various State Governments and other organisations.
- The Committee is of the view that implementation of recommendations of Kasturirangan report is only possible with active support of local population and requires intrinsic consultation with the State Government at micro level to achieve the desired objectives of saving the Western Ghats.
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