13 Dec 2019  |   06:03am IST

Parrikar 'Smriti Sthal' to come up flouting CRZ rules?

GCZMA cleared GSIDC proposal despite expert members raising red flag as they wanted EIA and further study on the matter
Parrikar 'Smriti Sthal' to come up flouting CRZ rules?

SURAJ NANDREKAR


PANJIM: Even as the State government prepares to lay the foundation stone for the late Manohar Parrikar’s Smriti Sthal at Miramar on his birth anniversary on Friday, questions are being raised whether Goa Coastal Zone Management Authority (GCZMA) bypassed rules to clear the memorial.

The 216th GCZMA meeting held on November 19, 2019, under the chairmanship of Puneet Kumar Goel cleared the proposal of Goa State Infrastructure Development Corporation for a Rs 10 cr memorial.

Sources present at the meeting told Herald that this crucial matter was placed at the end of the meeting and cleared in a hurry without paying heed to the objections raised by the expert members.

“At least four expert members objected to the proposal saying a proper study has to be carried out before taking a decision and also an Environment Impact Assessment has to be carried out,” said an expert member on condition of anonymity. The member said nobody objected to the memorial if it fits within the legal framework.

As per the minutes of the meeting, GCZMA cleared the proposal stating that the land was way outside the 100 m CRZ line. 

The minutes, copy of which is in possession of Herald, states that GSIDC approached GCZMA requesting for a NOC/permission for the construction of Parrikar’s Smriti Sthal in plot bearing PT Sheet No 79 of Chalta No. 1 of Panjim at Miramar. 

It says a site inspection was conducted to verify the CRZ zoning and the documents by Expert Members Dr Prabhakar Shirodkar and Eng Audhoot Bhonsule, on 25/10/2019.

Expert Observations

The members found that the site is a plot of land abutting the western side of the main road going from Miramar to Dona Paula lying next and towards the south of the existing D B Bandodkar Samadhi and lying along the mouth of Mandovi River at Miramar in CRZ III area.

“At site, the width of the river mouth is more than 100m. So, the riverine NDZ which becomes applicable is 100m of the distance from the HTL of the river from the HTL towards the landward side at Miramar,” the members observed.

Further it was observed that the survey map of the area submitted by DSLR, Panjim indicates that the structure proposed lies much beyond 100m of NDZ line at Panjim.

“There is also a note attached to the file signed by the earlier Member Secretary of GCZMA, dated 17/03/2019 which indicates that the proposed location of late Manohar Parrikar’s Smriti Sthal is lying beyond 100m from the HTL of the river where no CRZ becomes applicable,” the members noted.

Expert Conclusion, Recommendation

After the above observations, members felt that no CRZ becomes applicable to the proposal and the construction can be permitted as per the terms and conditions of TCP or other authorities.

“This may be deliberated in the Authority meeting for a decision. In view of the above, Authority may deliberate and decide,” the members said.

Activist cries foul

Social activist Kashinath Shetye said GCZMA was not correct about the land being outside the 100m HTL.

“How can they say the land is outside CRZ when the CZMP is not yet ready? Also if they say the area falls in CRZ III area, then construction has to be permitted outside 200 metres,” Shetye told Herald. 

Shetye said he was not against the memorial, but the law has to be followed and the authorities have to prepare a proper EIA before going ahead.

IDhar UDHAR

IDHAR UDHAR