Aim of EIA 2020 Draft is ‘Loot of the Nation’: Rahul Gandhi

Prakash Javadekar, in response to Rahul Gandhi’s comments, alleged that they were “unnecessary and premature.”

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Environment
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File photo of Rahul Gandhi. 
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"EIA 2020 draft must be withdrawn to stop #LootOfTheNation and environmental destruction," Rahul Gandhi tweeted in an attack on the Centre over the draft environment impact assessment (EIA), on Monday, 10 August.

Aim of EIA 2020 Draft is ‘Loot of the Nation’: Rahul Gandhi

WHAT DID RAHUL GANDHI SAY?

Alleging the the aim of EIA 2020 draft was “loot of the nation”, Rahul Gandhi said:

“This (EIA) is another dreadful example of what the BJP government has been doing for its select suit-boot ‘friends’ who loot the resources of the country,”   

Previously, in a Facebook post Rahul Gandhi had shared a Livemint report and alleged that the EIA 2020 draft was not only “dangerous”, but “disgraceful”, and the long term consequence would be catastrophic.

“Not only does it have the potential to reverse many of the hard fought gains that have been won over the years in the battle to protect our environment, it could potentially unleash widespread environmental destruction and mayhem across India.”   

The new Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) 2020 draft which has been placed by the BJP Government for public feedback,...

Posted by Rahul Gandhi on Sunday, August 9, 2020

JAVADEKAR’S RESPONSE

Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar, in response to Rahul Gandhi’s comments, alleged that they were “unnecessary and premature.”

According to PTI, Javadekar was addressing the media after an event to celebrate World Elephant Day, when he said:

“Saw reaction of some leaders demanding protest against the EIA draft. How can they protest against the draft? It is not a final notification. It was kept for public consultation for 150 days because of COVID-19. Otherwise it is only 60 days as per rules.”   

“We have received thousands of suggestions which we welcome,” said Javadekar, adding that those suggestions will be considered before a final call is taken.

“So people jumping just on the draft is not fair practice. Those who want to now protest, during their regime took many of the big decisions without consultations. It is unnecessary and premature. I have mentioned it in my letter to (Congress leader and former Union minister) Jairam Ramesh.”

CRITICISM OF EIA

The draft EIA notification has received criticism from environmentalists, students, youth wings and NGOs across India who claim it has diluted the environmental clearance procedure, reported PTI.

The website of Fridays For Future India, which describes itself as a people's movement for climate justice, has been blocked while it ran an awareness campaign "intended to draw attention to the draft Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) Notification, 2020, and make it easier for people to raise their concerns".

The website has been blocked since 10 July, with a notice reportedly sent by the Delhi Police to the domain service provider saying that the "unlawful activities on this website may disturb peace, sovereignty of India".

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