Millennium Post

MoEF asks 6 states to stop development works in W Ghats

Environment ministry has issued directions to six state governments prohibiting development activities including mining and quarrying in the 60,000 sq km ecologically sensitive area of Western Ghats.

The ministry’s direction came weeks after it gave approval to a controversial report on Western Ghats prepared by the K Kasturirangan-led panel which recommended prohibition on development activities in 37 per cent of natural landscape that has high biological richness.

In its order issued to Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Goa, Maharashtra and Gujarat on Wednesday, the ministry said the ‘directions will come into force with immediate effect and remain in force till further orders’.

‘In case of any violation, appropriate legal action under the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 shall be taken,’ it said.

The 37 per cent of natural landscape identified by the 10-member High Level Working Group under Kasturirangan has low forest fragmentation, low population density and containing protected areas, world heritage sites and tiger and elephant corridors has been identified as Ecologically Sensitive Area.
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