Friday, December 17, 2010

'Green violations by Tata Steel, L&T were overlooked'

The environment ministry overlooked green law violations by Tata Steel and Larsen and Toubro (L&T) in their Dharma port project in Orissa, an environmental group said Thursday, quoting from a Right to Information (RTI) reply. Greenpeace obtained file notings of Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh on the Dharma project, which has been at the centre of controversy for years due to being adjacent to the Bhitarkanika National Park and Gahirmatha Marine Sanctuary. 'The file noting by Jairam Ramesh admits that there is a probable legal violation, but argues in favour of condoning it on the grounds that the port itself is nearing completion,' Greenpeace India's oceans campaign manager Sanjiv Gopal said. 'He (Ramesh) further wrote that had construction not commenced, they could have taken a decision unequivocally not to let the project proceed at the site whose forest status is disputed,' he said. According to the NGO, the revelation was in sharp contradiction to the ministry's strictures against Vedanta, Adarsh Society and Lavasa Corporation.

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Greenpeace has always tried to find some fallacy in their long time opponent the Tatas. They somehow manage to attract publicity to any campaign they have started against the big corporate. In case of Dhamra Port Construction also, time & again, they involved into unjustified means to prove their point of illegal construction at the Dhamra Project area making the Olive Ridley Turtles a pawn in the battle. But to their dismay, the Turtles ditched the NGO through record mass nesting this year. To counter this shock might be Greenpeace has resorted to meaningless emotional outbursts without heeding to any scientific reasoning. They published a false report on their website that faced consequences from the Orissa Government. A letter of Government of Orissa, from year 2000 clearly states that the port area of Orissa does not come under any forestland. Therefore there has not been any violation of the provisions mentioned in Forest Conservation Act. This confirmation has been received in 2000, at a time when Tata Steel had not been a part of the venture at all.  
I would appreciate it if you post a link to the said letter.  
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