Times News Network, April 19 2018
Put together by a committee under the chairmanship of Dr Shailesh Nayak, it is, however, described by the green lobby as a capitulation to commercial interests. Environmentalist Debi Goenka, said, “The Nayak committee report is one-sided and prepared without consulting NGOs and civil society. It has endorsed every demand made by state governments to dilute the CRZ notification. As far as Mumbai is concerned, this is a bonanza for builders, they will get much higher construction rights in CRZ areas.’’ In case of Mumbai though, the draft seeks to protect open spaces close to the shore line. While acknowledging the built-up character of the seafront in the so-called CRZ II zone, it proposes to safeguard the remaining open spaces within this belt. CRZ-II constitutes developed land areas up to or close to the shoreline in municipal limits or in other existing legally designated urban areas.
The draft also makes provisions for tourism activities in ecologically sensitive areas.Besides, it allows land reclamation for commercial purposes.
Under the new zoning, densely populated CRZ-III A areas where population density is more than 2,161 persons/sq km as per the 2011 census will be earmarked as ‘No Development Zones’ (NDZs) from the high tide line (HTL) up to 50 metres. On the other hand, the area up to 200 metres will be earmarked as NDZ if the population density is less than 2,161 sq km and that would be categorised as CRZIII B.
“Stakeholders have been requested to send their comments\suggestion on the draft CRZ notification, 2018 within 60 days. The environment ministry will come out with final rules only after examining those comments,” he added.