Sardesai says eco-sensitive zones will not be touched; Govt is committed to protect environment; Alleges Congress cleared 1750 projects or cases in few months in 2011-12
PANJIM: Sending a strong signal that eco-sensitive zones will not be converted using the 16B amendment to the TCP Act, Town and Country Planning (TCP) Minister Vijai Sardesai said the government will also scrutinise how 11 cr sq metres of land got converted to settlement to benefit Delhiites.
Speaking to media persons in his Secretariat chamber, Sardesai said that eco-sensitive areas will not be converted come what may, they will be protected.
“This is the government stand. The change of zone that is being considered by Town and Country Planning Board in no way contradicts this government stand, so let me be very clear about this,” Sardesai stated.
He said the Town and Country Planning Department may receive many application conversions but it does not mean they have been considered or will be considered.
“Even RP 2021, where such things have already been done by the Congress party, even those are going through scrutiny by the technical committee. Once again the stress is on to protect the eco-sensitive areas,” he stated.
Sardesai said the scrutiny will take place of RP 2021 wherein 1750 cases or projects were approved within a few months. He said people have applied under 16B where TCP is giving individual zone changes.
“It is going through forest, it is going through agriculture and not everything is being considered. Secondly, all these changes will be put up to public suggestions for a period of 60 days wherein public objections will also being considered,” Sardesai said replying to the Congress criticism of 16B amendment.
Sardesai said there is clear transparency and the matter is not being handled like the Outline Development Plans.
“This is done in a way the public understands that so and so case has happened and this land will be converted. Also, whatever we have approved is just provisional approval. Scrutiny will happen. There is no need to create any panic, there’s no way eco-sensitive zones will be converted,” he said.
He added that there were cases where land has been converted for IPB, but taking into consideration the public sentiments this will be revisited.
“We don’t want to create panic amongst anybody, be it public or developers. But at the same time settlement is required as population is going up,” he said.
Taking a dig at the opposition Congress, Sardesai said the party is talking in different tones.
“Their legislative wing wants conversion of land and party says something else,” he said and questioned, “Is Congress trying to save 11 cr sq metres of land it converted in RP 2021?”
Sardesai further stated that 16B amendment is for people to get justice whose 7 cr of land due to change in RP 2021.