Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Buddha nod for filling waterbody

[This small report shows for whose interest the ecological balance is being destroyed and who are the culprits. Red Barricade]

KOLKATA, 13 OCT: the chief minister, Mr Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee today chose to support the district magistrate of South-24 Parganas on the issue of filling up a waterbody to provide land to Mani Bhaumik Foundation.
The information and cultural affairs department today issued a press release clarifying that the 15 acres of land leased out to the foundation was classified as a “layek jungle” (it was once a jungle) and it was not settled by the land department with any fisheries cooperative by land and land reforms department or KMDA for pisciculture.
The statement also clarified that the district administration had only assissted in building a boundary wall on the plot leased out to them. However, the statement is silent to Mr Nanda's contention that under the Indian Fisheries Act any land which retains water for more than six months is a waterbody and filling it up would require permission from his department.
fisheries minister, Mr Kironmoy Nanda, said: “ We have the letter in which KMDA had asked us to maintain 152 ponds in 1988. The chief minister was then the urban development minister.”
Earlier in the day, Mr Nanda had said: “The state government should provide land elsewhere.” The state land and land reforms department has in fact admitted that the land was leased out within a day at the behest of the chief minister without any verification. Even Mr Nanda and the Sundarban affairs minister, Mr Kanti Ganguly had verified the land few days ago.

Source: The Statesman 14 October, 2009

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