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Thread: The Beginning of the end of the NCR Green Zones

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    Default The Beginning of the end of the NCR Green Zones

    Govt. of India has decided to ease construction cap in NCR Green Zones, on the pretext of promoting tourism. Which in itself is not a good idea, in addition we all know that it will lead to rampant construction by builder and land mafia. I request all members to spread the word, rope in other nature lovers, and try and stall the passing of this law. I request the senior members to show us the way.
    Link to the news: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/i...w/30920241.cms

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    Thanks Anshul for posting this. We have covered this topic in the IndiaWilds Newsletter Vol. 6 Issue II (Feb 2014 issue) http://www.indiawilds.com/diary/indi...ol-6-issue-ii/ . I am sharing the details of this issue below and the email id to raise our voice.

    Revised Regional Plan for NCR
    Government is likely to notify the revised regional plan for NCR (2021) which allows tourism activities in ecologically sensitive zones and permits constructions in these areas beyond the current 0.5% cap

    Likely impact: green belt in Aravalis will be decimated.

    Aravali is one of the oldest mountain ranges in this country. The recent decimation of the green areas in the NCR region is seen aggravating the dust pollution, especially during the summer months where the peak particulate matter deposition is increasing. The revised Regional Plan for NCR is going to further aggravate the situation.

    According to an emerging story reported by Times of India the Urban development minister Kamal Nath, Chairman NCR Planning Board (NCRPB), has approved the minutes of the last board meeting which allows tourism activities in nature conservation zones (NCZ) and construction beyond current limit, albeit with the permission of the Union environment ministry.

    The plan is expected to be passed in the first week of March.

    The Lieutenant Governor of Delhi Najeeb Jung had raised questions over increasing the limit on constructions in such zones saying the move was diluting the principle of protection of these sensitive ecological zones.
    Earlier Plan: The Plan prepared in 2005 clearly said that only regional recreational activities — parks, wildlife sanctuaries etc — were allowed in NCZs with a limit of construction not exceeding 0.5% of land and that too with the permission of competent authorities.

    Changes: The new plan allows regional recreational activities with a limit on construction of 0.5%, except with the approval of the competent authorities under forest and environment laws. So the ministry will now have the discretion to allow constructions so it is a back door method of allowing it.

    The Haryana Government has been instrumental in pushing for abolishing the construction limit in the NCZ. The new plan appears to have been created to satisfy this demand.

    In January 2014, Delhi had the ignominy of having higher levels of air pollution than Beijing. The daily peak level of harmful particulate matter PM2.5 for Delhi in the first three weeks was 473 as compared to average of 227 of Beijing. In summer the the impact of dust storm is enhanced due to the low moisture content in the air in summer, leading to a higher resuspension of road dust(Guttikunda, Sarath et al, Health impacts of particulate pollution in a megacity—Delhi, India, Environmental Development, 2012). With increase in long term health concerns due to air pollution, it is imperative that we protect the last green areas in the NCR region.

    Recently the Haryana Government has been accused of taking undue interests in real estate, the revised regional plan is likely to provide enough fodder to critics.

    Members may write to the Vice President of the Congress Party, Shri Rahul Gandhi urging him to not bend before the real estate lobby and drop the line “except with the approval of the competent authorities under forest and environment laws”. He has been championing transparency and has in the past taken up issues in the public interest. Lets hope that lot of people write to him. His email id is - office@rahulgandhi.in

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