Assembly committee advocates implementation of Gadgil Report

Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala legislative assembly's committee on environment has suggested implementation of recommendations made in Madhav Gadgil's report. The special report of the committee (2019-21) warns of imminent hazards the natural phenomenon may cause lest urgent steps are taken.

"Vigilant action is urged before forests, hills, fields, streams, rivers, lagoons, sea and organic system are extinct.  Concerns on environment should be prioritised over religion and politics. Lakhs of constructions on the mountains may be swept downto Arabian Sea at any time. As the role of agriculture is decreasing in the economy,  that of mining and construction is on the rise. Interventions in Western Ghats should be judicious and with an ecological perspective.   Studies should be carried out in this regard," the committee led by Mullakkara Ratnakaran recommends.

The report was prepared after collection of data from environmental activists, public figures and representatives, by the committee which visited Idukki, Wayanad, Palakkad and Thrissur districts.

The 2018 flood underscores the fact that environment is the prime protector.  Kerala's Western Ghat is 70 degrees inclined to Arabian Sea. Eighty per cent of the Western Ghats are landslide-prone areas.  Other than Western Ghats,  midland hills, paddy fields, wetlands, underground water sources,  rivers and seas are exploited for corporate interests. The places which had witnessed heated protests against Gadgil-Kasturirangan reports endured numerous landslides and rockslides. The whole geographical area of Kerala is protected by Western Ghats.  Actions should be taken on reports submitted by National Centre for Earth Science Studies and Geological Survey of India. The ecological and long term effects of the floods demand long term planning equivalent to five year plan, the report says.

The report was submitted on 4th July. PV Anwar, Anil Akkara, K. Babu, O.R. Kelu, PTA Raheem, KM Shaji, KV Vijayadas and M. Vincent are the members of the committee.

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