Govt’s proposal to amend Forest Conservation Act receives over 5,600 responses

The Centre said on Monday that more than 5,600 comments have been received by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change from various stakeholders on the proposal to amend the existing Forest Conservation Act.

Replying to a question raised in the Lok Sabha by V.K. Sreekandan, Ashwini Kumar Choubey, Minister of State for Environment, Forest and Climate Change, said that based on the concerns and suggestions received from state governments, Union Territories, Union ministries and various other organisations, the ministry had sought comments from the stakeholders on the matter by circulating a public consultation paper.

The consultation paper was placed in the public domain in vernacular languages also, the minister said, adding, “More than 5,600 comments were received by the ministry from various stakeholders, including those in vernacular languages.”

The consultation paper was placed in the public domain in early October for one month, seeking comments from all the stakeholders.

The paper called for ease of clearance for diversion of forest land for all non-forestry purposes, including national security and border infrastructure projects that require prior approval of the Central government under the provisions of Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980.

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