Delhi

Experts fear repeat of Okhla in Asola

Environmentalists who are crying foul over the government’s decision to notify eco-sensitive zone around the Okhla Bird sanctuary to one kilometre are now fearing a repeat with Asola Wildlife Sanctuary, which has been in news more for the monkeys moved there from the rest of the city.

Dr. C.V. Singh, a senior scientist retired from Haryana Pollution Control Board, has moved the National Green Tribunal praying that all constructions without clearance from National Wildlife Board be prevented within 10km radius of the sanctuary.

He also said till date no eco-sensitive zone has been notified around Asola Sanctuary, a potential green lung and carbon sink for the city.

The NGT on Wednesday issued notices to the Ministry of Environment and Forests, the Delhi government, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana governments besides others on Dr. Singh's plea.

His counsel Gaurav Bansal told the tribunal that “nearly 50 major projects such as malls, townships and apartments are being constructed within 10 km of the Asola Wildlife Sanctuary. However, the Delhi government and its State Environment Impact Assessment Authority are granting environmental clearances in violation of office memorandums and guidelines of the Centre in this regard.”

The development comes a fortnight after the MoEF issued a notification limiting the eco-sensitive zone around the Okhla Bird Sanctuary to 100 metres from eastern, western and southern boundary and up to 1.27 km from the northern boundary of the sanctuary up to the DND flyover across the riverbed, situated in the Gautam Budh Nagar district of Uttar Pradesh and southeast district of Delhi. Environmentalists have dismissed the notification as a bad move to favour big builders and developers.

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Printable version | Oct 20, 2020 11:38:49 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/experts-fear-repeat-of-okhla-in-asola/article7609691.ece

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