Gujarat Government Misses Deadline for Coastal Zone Management Plan, Projects Stuck

Reported by

Aditi PatilLand Conflict Watch

Last updated on

June 25, 2021

Location of Conflict

Dholera

Ahmedabad

Reason or Cause of Conflict

Environmental/Ecological Damage

(

Eco-Sensitive Zone

)

People Affected by Conflict

Land Area Affected (in Hectares)

ha

Starting Year

2011

State

Gujarat

Sector

Land Use

At a mandatory public hearing on Gujarat Coastal Zone Management Plan (CZMP) in Dholera town on August 7, 2018, jointly held by the Gujarat Ecology Commission, the Gujarat Pollution Control Board and the forests and environment department, several activists and stakeholders protested against the plan prepared by the state government. According to them, the maps used to prepare the CZMP are quite old and, therefore, do not reflect the ground reality. They have demanded another hearing. A CZMP involves managing coastal areas to balance environmental and economic activities. The objective of the plan is to ensure that coastal communities are equipped to better address continued economic development of the coastal zones while accounting for natural resource management in the wake of climate change. The exercise is considered crucial for the safety of coastal zones as it can highlight important issues, such as erosion of and damage to coastal areas over the years as well as reflect the livelihoods of people dependent on coastal resources. The Gujarat government had prepared the CZMP on the basis of the order of the National Green Tribunal in November 2017. The order mandated all states to submit their CZMP to the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC) by April 30, 2018. On the other hand, the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) notification of 2011 had a clear clause stipulating that the maps of the coastal zones need to be prepared within 24 months. The Gujarat government did not prepare the map for more than five years. At the hearing, residents of Bhavnagar district, as well as environmental activists issued a press release, alleging that the government is now rushing to complete the process belatedly without giving accurate information. For example, legal and illegal prawn farms are missing, and the map marks certain villages that have been washed away and no longer exist. Moreover, despite the guidelines, the documents and maps have not been prepared in the local language. At least 23 projects, worth INR 50,000 crore, are held up due to the state government's failure to submit the CZMP on time. Rajiv Gupta, additional chief secretary, state forest and environment department, had announced that the CZMP would be finalised and submitted to the MoEFCC by October 31, 2018. But the state missed the deadline. According to Paryavaran Mitra, an Ahmedabadbased NGO, the CRZ law has not been implemented in letter and spirit in the state despite being enacted in 1991.

Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Complaint against procedural violations, Opposition against environmental degradation

Region Classification

Urban and Rural

Type of Land

Both

Type of Common Land

Non-Forest (Other than Grazing Land)

Total investment involved (in Crores):

Type of investment:

Year of Estimation

Has the Conflict Ended?

When did it end?

Why did the conflict end?

Categories of Legislations Involved in the Conflict

Case Laws, Environmental Laws

Legislations/Policies Involved

  1. Coastal Regulation Zone Notification, 2011

    Rule 5: [Preparation of the Coastal Zone Management Plan by the state government]; Annexure I: [Guidelines to prepare a Coastal Zone Management Plan]

  2. Environment (Protection) Act, 1986

    Section 3(2)(v): [Power of the Union government to restrict areas in which industries etc. may carry out work]

  3. M/s Mehdad and Anr. Vs. Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change and Ors. and Shamsunder Shridhar Dalvi & Ors. Vs. Govt. Of India & Ors. (National Green Tribunal, O.A. No. 424/2016 and O.A.No. 11/2014)

    In the event that a state government does not submit the Coastal Zone Management Plan by April 30, 2018, they shall be liable for exemplary costs of INR 5 Lakh

Whether claims/objections were made as per procedure in the relevant statute

What was the claim(s)/objection(s) raised by the community? What was the decision of the concerned government department?

Legal Processes and Loopholes Enabling the Conflict:

Violation of environmental laws

Legal Status:

Out of Court

Status of Case In Court

Whether any adjudicatory body was approached

Name of the adjudicatory body

Name(s) of the Court(s)

National Green Tribunal

Case Number

Major Human Rights Violations Related to the Conflict:

Whether criminal law was used against protestors

Official name of the criminal law. Did the case reach trial?

Reported Details of the Violation:

Date of Violation

Location of Violation

Nature of Protest

Government Departments Involved in the Conflict:

Gujarat Pollution Control Board, Gujarat Ecology Commission, Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change

PSUs Involved in the Conflict:

Did LCW Approach Government Authorities for Comments?

No

Name, Designation and Comment of the Government Authorities Approached

Corporate Parties Involved in the Conflict:

Did LCW Approach Corporate Parties for Comments?

Name, Designation and Comment of Corporate Authorities Approached

Other Parties Involved in the Conflict:

Paryavaran Mitra, Paryavaran Suraksha Samiti

Resources Related to Conflict

  • News Articles Related to the Conflict:
  • Documents Related to the Conflict:
  • Links Related to the Conflict:
No Images Available

Documented By

Aditi Patil

Reviewed By

Aditi Patil

Updated By

Aditi Patil

Edited By

Aditi PatilLand Conflict Watch
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