From Our Special Correspondent
Daijiworld Media Network - Panaji
Panaji, Jun 16: Noted environmentalist Madhav Gadgil on Thursday snubbed the politicians opposing the experts’ report on the Western Ghat claiming that `they were doing confiscation in the name of development.’
“What is done in the name of development is simply confiscation. On the other hand, we environment advocates are being accused of blocking development,” said Gadgil, who headed Western Ghat Ecology Experts Panel (WGEEP).
Gadgil panel has recommended formation of exclusive ecological zones (EEZs) depending on the eco sensitivity of the parts where the activities are restricted. The panel has submitted its report to union ministry of environment and forest (MOEF), which is now kept open for suggestions.
“The idea that ecologically sensitive zones mean only restrictions is not right. We have also suggested ideas for development,” he told a gathering of environmentalists in Goa, where he had made presentation on the report.
Gadgil, whose panel report has been on the verge of rejection by Kerala government, said that people should ask for serious efforts at safeguarding precious natural heritage of western ghat.
He claimed that although there is communication shared between states and union government over the report, there has been no letter written to the panel by any government.
Responding to a question, Gadgil said that Goa should have a buffer zone between the wildlife sanctuaries and other non-environment-friendly commercial activities around it. “The buffer zone would vary but it will be in several kilometers,” he said.
The environmentalist admitted that `he was not aware of the ground level details of Goa.’