Collective advocacy effort on a proposed amendment to India's EIA law

Dear friends,

On 20th June 2016, we shared an update about the proposed amendments to India’s environment law which if approved would mean projects operating illegally without requisite environmental approval could carry out business as usual provided they pay for damages. This totally undermines the Environment Impact Assessment framework in India and allows Rule of Law to be negotiable in favour of violators. An earlier posting, the CPR-Namati submission, our writings in mainstream media can be found here.

Following our formal submission the EJ team in Delhi/Gujarat and partner organisations in Chhattisgarh and Odisha coordinated efforts to ensure that implications of the proposed amendments are understood at state (province) and district levels based on which substantive submissions can be sent to the ministry. One such media release by the Chhattisgarh Bachao Andolan (Save Chhattisgarh Movement) following their submission which was made in Hindi is attached here CBA submission on ESP.pdf (140.0 KB)

We also shared our submission and Opeds in mainstream papers on several thematic list-serves in India which has several members who are researcher, activists, journalists NGOs and CBOs. These were also effectively used by to frame an online petition and this article to draw citizen’s action on the issue. One NGO also specifically referred to our submission while filing there own with the ministry.

The government is yet to take a final decision on these amendments and it is to be seen whether the range of objections sent through our and several other independent efforts will be taken on board. Even as we await the outcome, this effort was a great learning to re-establish the importance of coordinated action to ensure that policy matters and advocacy efforts are able to link local to national (and where required global) levels.

Look forward to hearing your thoughts and learning from your experience. Kanchi