Minister of State for Environment and Forests Jairam Ramesh on Wednesday ruled out review of the conditional environmental clearance given to the Jaitapur nuclear power plant in Maharashtra, and urged ‘interest groups' not to use environment as an issue to target the government.
“As far as environment clearance is concerned, we have done all that is required and all different interest groups should not use environment as a shield behind which they start firing their guns at the government,” Mr. Ramesh told journalists when asked whether the Ministry would re-think on the clearance given to the power plant in view of the agitation by some groups.
Stating that many people have different agenda in Jaitapur, the Minister asked those opposing the clearance not to ‘make a mockery' of the process. “The clearance for the project was accorded on November 28. The 35 conditions associated with the clearance have been put in the public domain,” he added.
“There are political parties which have never agreed with the fact that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh concluded the most successful civil nuclear agreement, of which Jaitapur is the first project,” he said. Acknowledging that there are some problems in land acquisition, he said these would be looked into by Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan more sensitively and that the communities had to be taken along. His comments came in the backdrop of senior BJP leader Yashwant Sinha and CPI(M) general-secretary Prakash Karat demanding a re-look into the conditional clearance.