17 lakh public comments on draft EIA notification

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Nearly 17 lakh objections, comments, and suggestions to the draft environment impact assessment (EIA) notification of 2020 have been received by the union environment ministry till Tuesday.

According to Delhi High Court order, today was the last date for submission of objections and suggestions to the contentious draft regulation, according to a Delhi high court order.

The ministry’s EIA division has been asked to study the issues raised by people in their submissions and coming out with a final notification.

Environment secretary RP Gupta, “It will take us some time to consider the issues raised by these comments and suggestions. Letters have gone to the minister (Prakash Javadekar), many have come to me and to other officials. Many of them are repetitive.”

The environment ministry has also held meetings and discussions with several EIA consultants, industry bodies and companies, whose comments are being considered separately.

A total of 100 environmental groups, organisations and individuals, who are part of a national campaign to oppose the draft EIA notification, have over the last week addressed emails to 785 Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha MPs from 28 states and eight union territories, they said in a statement on Tuesday.

“We are calling upon them to take a stand against the anti-environment and anti-people draft EIA notification 2020 and demand its immediate withdrawal. As elected political representatives, these ministers are duty-bound to protect the interests of the people and the nation and its resources, which this draft legislation is bound to adversely impact. We have called upon the ministers to write to the Ministry of Environment Forest & Climate Change (MoEFCC) to demand the withdrawal of the draft EIA notification 2020 and demand instead that strong environmental governance be put in place in consultation with the people, for protecting the ecology and natural resources of our country for present and future generations,” they said.

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