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Mangroves cleared for cricket ground in Gujarat's Amreli; High Court issues notice

Reported by

Suchak Patel

Legal Review by

Anmol Gupta

Edited by

Anupa Sagar Kujur

Updated by

Updated by

Published on

June 17, 2024

June 24, 2024

Edited on

June 17, 2024

Sector

Infrastructure

Reason or Cause of Conflict

Other Kind of Infrastructure

Starting Year

2023

Land Area Affected (in Hectares)

ha

Households Affected by Conflict

People Affected by Conflict

State

Gujarat

Sector

Infrastructure

People Affected by Conflict

Households Affected by Conflict

Land Area Affected (in Hectares)

ha

Starting Year

2023

Location of Conflict

Jafrabad

Amreli

Reason or Cause of Conflict

Other Kind of Infrastructure

Land Conflict Summary

In December 2023, locals opposed the removal of mangroves and flattening of land in the fragile coastal regulation zone (CRZ) in Jafrabad in Gujarat's Amreli district for the construction of the cricket ground.

A local advocate Haresh Bambhaniya, who moved the Gujarat High Court with a public interest litigation (PIL), said, “On December 22, I noticed that earthmoving machinery was at work, uprooting mangroves and creating an earthen bund. I immediately went to the office of Jafrabad mamlatdar and gave him an application, seeking his intervention for the protection of mangroves.” However, the work continued for the next few days.

According to the petition, the affected land falls within the High Tide Line, where construction activities are prohibited within 500 meters of the landward side, as per the CRZ-I Category of the Coastal Regulation Zone Notification.

On 4 May 2024, the court served notices to the Centre, the the Gujarat Pollution Control Board (GPCB) and the Amreli District Collector. It also requested statements from the Ministry of Environment, the state government, the district Collector, and the Mamlatdar by the next hearing date on 7 July 2024.

Following the court order, the Amreli district CRZ committee held a meeting on 15 May 2024 and ordered restoration of the land. "The state CRZ committee informed us that action can be taken under the Environment Protection Act and that restoration work should commence. Consequently, we removed the earthen bunds and leveled the area again over the weekend," Ajay Dahiya, district collector of Amreli and chairman of the Amreli district CRZ committee, told The Indian Express.

Meanwhile, the Jafrabad police have initiated an investigation based on a complaint from Alkesh Rathod, a regional officer of the Gujarat Pollution Control Board (Bhavnagar). An FIR has been filed against unidentified individuals under Section 25 of the Environment Protection Act (contravention of EP Act provisions) and Section 427 of the Indian Penal Code (mischief causing damage or loss exceeding Rs 50).

"Initially, we didn’t understand the reason for clearing the mangroves. Eventually, it became clear that the area was being prepared for a cricket ground, with earthen bunds constructed on three sides to prevent tidal waters from entering," Bhambhaniya told the publication.

Fact Sheet

Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Demand to cancel the project

Opposition against environmental degradation

Other Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Region Classification

Type of Land

Common

Type of Common Land

Forest

What was the action taken by the police?

How many people did the police detain or arrest?

What is the current status of the detained/accused persons?

Did the person face any violence while in police custody?

Did the person face any violence while in police custody?

If any arrests took place, were the accused persons produced before a judge within 24 hours of the arrest?

If the accused was not produced before a magistrate within 24 hours, or not produced at all, what were the reasons?

Legislation under which the accused was charged

Was the accused person informed of their right to legal representation? Did the accused person have access to legal aid?

In cases where the accused person approached the court for bail, was bail granted?

Why was bail granted or rejected? If granted, what were the bail conditions and quantum of bail?

Were there any other notable irregularities that took place, or other significant details?

Details of sources (names of accused, names and numbers of any lawyers, names of any police officers contacted)

Status of Project

Project stalled due to protests

Original Project Deadline

Whether the Project has been Delayed

Significance of Land to Land Owners/Users

Other environmental services

Whether the project was stalled due to land conflict

Source/Reference

“The state CRZ committee told us that that action can be taken under the Environment Protection Act and that restoration work should also be undertaken. Accordingly, we removed the earthen bunds and levelled the area again over the weekend,” Ajay Dahiya, district collector of Amreli and chairman of Amreli district CRZ committee, told [The Indian Express](https://indianexpress.com/).

Total investment involved (in Crores):

Type of investment:

Year of Estimation

Page Number In Investment Document:

Has the Conflict Ended?

When did it end?

Why did the conflict end?

Legal Data

Categories of Legislations Involved in the Conflict

Legislations/Policies Involved

Coastal Regulation Zone Notification, 2019
Paragraph 1(i) [CRZ includes the land area from the High Tide Lane to 500 metres]; Paragraph 2.1 [CRZ-IA contains ecologically sensitive areas necessary for maintaining the integrity of the coast, including mangroves] Paragraph 4 [Prohibited activities within CRZ to include setting up of new industries, reclamation of land for commercial purposes, etc.]
Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980
Section 2 [Restriction on diverting forest land for non-forest purposes without clearance from the union government]
  1. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

  2. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

  3. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

  4. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

  5. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

  6. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

  7. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

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:

In Court

Status of Case In Court

Pending

Whether any adjudicatory body was approached

No

Name of the adjudicatory body

Name(s) of the Court(s)

Gujarat High Court

Case Number

WRIT PETITION (PIL) NO. 29 of 2024

Main Reasoning/Decision of court

The case filed before the Gujarat High Court was heard on May 3, 2024. The petitioner has contended that the disputed land falls within the High Tide Line and no construction activities can be carried out within 500 metres of the landward side of this HTL. This type of land falls under CRZ I category in the Coastal Regulation Zone Notification of 2019. Notice was issued in the matter. The case is next slated to be heard on July 12, 2024.

Major Human Rights Violations Related to the Conflict:

No items found.

Whether criminal law was used against protestors:

Reported Details of the Violation:

Date of Violation

Location of Violation

Additional Information

Nature of Protest

No items found.

Government Departments Involved in the Conflict:

Amreli district CRZ committee; Amreli District administration; Gujarat Pollution Control Board; Jafrabad Police

PSUs Involved in the Conflict:

Did LCW Approach Government Authorities for Comments?

Name, Designation and Comment of the Government Authorities Approached

Corporate Parties Involved in the Conflict:

Did LCW Approach Corporate Parties for Comments?

Communities/Local Organisations in the Conflict:

Information on the use of criminal law

What was the action taken by the police?

How many people did the police detain or arrest?

What is the current status of the detained/accused persons?

Did the person face any violence while in police custody?

If any arrests took place, were the accused persons produced before a judge within 24 hours of the arrest?

If the accused was not produced before a magistrate within 24 hours, or not produced at all, what were the reasons?

Legislation under which the accused was charged

Was the accused person informed of their right to legal representation? Did the accused person have access to legal aid?

In cases where the accused person approached the court for bail, was bail granted?

Why was bail granted or rejected? If granted, what were the bail conditions and quantum of bail?

Were there any other notable irregularities that took place, or other significant details?

Resources

Resources Related to Conflict

  • News Articles Related to the Conflict:
  • Documents Related to the Conflict:
  • Links Related to the Conflict:

Images

Image Credit:  

Image Credit:  

Video

In December 2023, locals opposed the removal of mangroves and flattening of land in the fragile coastal regulation zone (CRZ) in Jafrabad in Gujarat's Amreli district for the construction of the cricket ground.

A local advocate Haresh Bambhaniya, who moved the Gujarat High Court with a public interest litigation (PIL), said, “On December 22, I noticed that earthmoving machinery was at work, uprooting mangroves and creating an earthen bund. I immediately went to the office of Jafrabad mamlatdar and gave him an application, seeking his intervention for the protection of mangroves.” However, the work continued for the next few days.

According to the petition, the affected land falls within the High Tide Line, where construction activities are prohibited within 500 meters of the landward side, as per the CRZ-I Category of the Coastal Regulation Zone Notification.

On 4 May 2024, the court served notices to the Centre, the the Gujarat Pollution Control Board (GPCB) and the Amreli District Collector. It also requested statements from the Ministry of Environment, the state government, the district Collector, and the Mamlatdar by the next hearing date on 7 July 2024.

Following the court order, the Amreli district CRZ committee held a meeting on 15 May 2024 and ordered restoration of the land. "The state CRZ committee informed us that action can be taken under the Environment Protection Act and that restoration work should commence. Consequently, we removed the earthen bunds and leveled the area again over the weekend," Ajay Dahiya, district collector of Amreli and chairman of the Amreli district CRZ committee, told The Indian Express.

Meanwhile, the Jafrabad police have initiated an investigation based on a complaint from Alkesh Rathod, a regional officer of the Gujarat Pollution Control Board (Bhavnagar). An FIR has been filed against unidentified individuals under Section 25 of the Environment Protection Act (contravention of EP Act provisions) and Section 427 of the Indian Penal Code (mischief causing damage or loss exceeding Rs 50).

"Initially, we didn’t understand the reason for clearing the mangroves. Eventually, it became clear that the area was being prepared for a cricket ground, with earthen bunds constructed on three sides to prevent tidal waters from entering," Bhambhaniya told the publication.

Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Demand to cancel the project

Opposition against environmental degradation

Other Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Region Classification

Type of Land

Common

Type of Common Land

Forest

Total investment involved (in Crores):

Type of investment:

Year of Estimation

Page Number In Investment Document:

Has the Conflict Ended?

When did it end?

Why did the conflict end?

Categories of Legislations Involved in the Conflict

Legislations/Policies Involved

Coastal Regulation Zone Notification, 2019
Paragraph 1(i) [CRZ includes the land area from the High Tide Lane to 500 metres]; Paragraph 2.1 [CRZ-IA contains ecologically sensitive areas necessary for maintaining the integrity of the coast, including mangroves] Paragraph 4 [Prohibited activities within CRZ to include setting up of new industries, reclamation of land for commercial purposes, etc.]
Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980
Section 2 [Restriction on diverting forest land for non-forest purposes without clearance from the union government]
  1. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

  2. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

  3. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

  4. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

  5. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

  6. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

  7. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

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:

In Court

Status of Case In Court

Pending

Whether any adjudicatory body was approached

No

Name of the adjudicatory body

Name(s) of the Court(s)

Gujarat High Court

Case Number

WRIT PETITION (PIL) NO. 29 of 2024

Main Reasoning/Decision of court

The case filed before the Gujarat High Court was heard on May 3, 2024. The petitioner has contended that the disputed land falls within the High Tide Line and no construction activities can be carried out within 500 metres of the landward side of this HTL. This type of land falls under CRZ I category in the Coastal Regulation Zone Notification of 2019. Notice was issued in the matter. The case is next slated to be heard on July 12, 2024.

Major Human Rights Violations Related to the Conflict:

No items found.

Whether criminal law was used against protestors:

Reported Details of the Violation:

Date of Violation

Location of Violation

Nature of Protest

No items found.

Government Departments Involved in the Conflict:

Amreli district CRZ committee; Amreli District administration; Gujarat Pollution Control Board; Jafrabad Police

PSUs Involved in the Conflict:

Did LCW Approach Government Authorities for Comments?

Name, Designation and Comment of the Government Authorities Approached

Corporate Parties Involved in the Conflict:

Did LCW Approach Corporate Parties for Comments?

Communities/Local Organisations in the Conflict:

Resources Related to Conflict

  • News Articles Related to the Conflict:
  • Documents Related to the Conflict:
  • Links Related to the Conflict:

Image Credit:  

Image Credit:  

Documented By

Text Link

Reviewed By

Text Link

Updated By

Text Link

Edited By

Text LinkLand Conflict Watch

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