PM Modi On Urban Naxals: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday alleged that politically-backed “urban Naxalites and anti-development elements” stalled the construction of the Sardar Sarovar dam on the Narmada river in Gujarat for several years and campaigned saying that it would will harm the environment.
The Prime Minister urged the environment ministers of various states to ensure that projects meant to facilitate business or make life easier are not stopped unnecessarily in the name of environment only.
Prime Minister Modi said such ‘Urban Naxals’ are still active and various institutions are supporting them to disrupt development projects in the name of environment. He asked the state governments to adopt a balanced approach in granting environmental clearances to “deal with the conspiracies of such people”.
Let the Prime Minister Narendra Modi On Friday, Gujarat inaugurated a two-day national conference of state environment ministers through video conference at Ekta Nagar in Narmada district.
Addressing the conference, Modi said, “Sardar Sarovar dam construction was put on hold for many years and campaigned against it saying that it would harm the environment. This delay resulted in a huge loss of money. Now when The dam is ready, so you can see how hollow their claims were.”
‘The area around the dam has become a pilgrimage area’
Modi said that contrary to the project’s claim of harming the environment, the area around the dam has now become a “pilgrimage zone” for environment lovers. Modi was referring to the famous ‘Statue of Unity’ and the iconic tourist attractions built around this 182-metre-high monument like jungle safaris, the Valley of Flowers etc.
‘City Naxalites are still active’
Prime Minister Modi cautioned the ministers that these urban Naxals are still active and various institutions are supporting them to disrupt development projects in the name of environment. He said, “These people disrupt projects by influencing the judiciary and even the World Bank. I urge you guys that ‘ease of doing business’ or ‘making life’ projects are unnecessary in the name of environment only. Don’t be stopped.”
The Prime Minister said, “States should adopt a balanced approach in granting environmental clearances to deal with the conspiracies of such people.” Expressing unhappiness over the delay in getting environmental clearances to various projects, Modi said that only if the clearances are given early, development will take place at a faster pace. It should be done without any compromise.
‘Delay increases project cost’
He said, “Around six thousand environmental clearance applications and about 6500 forest clearance applications are pending in different states. As you all know, such delay increases the cost of the project. Needs to be reduced. Only what is needed should be kept pending.” He said that expediting the process of granting environment clearance would be good for both the economic and environmental sectors.
The Prime Minister mentioned the ‘Pragati Maidan Tunnel’ recently built in Delhi, which has improved the traffic there. He said, “Vehicles are saving about 55 lakh liters of fuel every year by using this tunnel. This has reduced carbon emissions by 13,000 tonnes. This otherwise would have required six lakh trees. Projects related to flyovers, roads and railways are carbon-rich. Helps in reducing emissions. These aspects should also be kept in mind while giving environmental clearance.”
On this occasion, the Prime Minister emphasized the importance of training forest workers, strengthening the mechanism to deal with forest fire incidents, producing industrial fuel using forest waste like dry leaves and adopting participatory and integrated approach for better results. stressed too. He called upon the states to implement the vehicle junk policy of the Center by converting defective and old government vehicles into junk, so that this process can be started.
The Prime Minister said, “I want the states, as much as possible, to start implementing the bio-fuel policy by using biofuels in their government vehicles. We need to adopt the policies and implement them at the grassroots level. Adding ethanol to fuel will also help farmers as their farm waste will become a source of income for them.
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