Coastal Regulation Zone 2011 provides special relaxations: Jairam

January 8th, 2011 - 9:53 pm ICT by IANS  

Mumbai, Jan 8 (IANS) Keeping in view the diverse problems faced by fishermen and local communities living in slums, special relaxations have been provided in the Coastal Regulation Zone 2011 notification, Union Minister for Environment and Forests Jairam Ramesh said Saturday.”Keeping in view the diverse problems faced by fishermen and local communities living in slums, those residing in dilapidated buildings and chawls, special relaxations have been given,” Jairam Ramesh told reporters here.

Terming the CRZ 2011 notification as a significant legislation for the future growth of Mumbai, the minister said that the commercial capital of the country was choking due to restrictions imposed under the CRZ 1991.

Following the liberalised coastal regulations, nearly 47,000 families living in slums and about 38,000 families living in chawls will be benefited by way of redevelopment of the areas and buildings.

He, however, said that all redevelopment activities should be undertaken only with the majority stake of the state government in them.

“Since the government is subjected to CAG (Comptroller and Auditor General) audit and falls under the ambit of RTI (Right to Information), there is a better scope for ensuring transparency and accountability,” he said.

“Koliwadas, where the Koli fishing community resides, can be developed only with the participation of that community. All Koliwadas have been placed under CRZ III category and are now eligible for FSI (Floor Space Index) of 2.5 against earlier 1.3,” Jairam Ramesh added.

The new norms also provide for construction of roads along the coast. However, these will have to be built on stilts to allow free flow of tidal water. “The development agency will have to re-plant five times the mangroves destructed in the construction activity,” the minister said.

He, however, firmly refused development of salt pans adjoining Mumbai’s coast line and said all ecological sensitive areas as well as notified opens spaces will be preserved.

Referring to the violations made under the CRZ 1991 provisions, Jairam Ramesh said: “The constitutionally backed ‘ex-post facto’ provision shall be applied and all such previous violations will be subjected to probe under the old act.”

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