Haryana Congress legislature party (CLP) leader Kiran Choudhry on Wednesday opposed the move of the BJP government in the state to approach the NCR Planning Board (NCRPB) for review of its decision to earmark 500 metre buffer around Mangar Bani in Aravallis as 'no construction zone'.
Former as forest minister Choudhry said in a statement that during her tenure, she had got the buffer zone notified in 2010 after great efforts and any reduction in the zone would be "environment-unfriendly", would affect the ecology of the area, and kick off a fresh war between environmental activists and the state government.
It may be recalled that environmentalists had requested the state government to amend the sub-regional plan (SRP)-2021 to bring the entire Aravallis under the natural conservation zone. While carrying out ground-truthing to bring Aravallis under the natural conservation zone (NCZ), the state government had left a big loophole which could result in rampant urbanisation in the region and pose a threat to the ecology, she said.
"In stating that the areas that are urbanisable don't fall under NCZ, the government has left a big loophole. This is a big threat to the future of the conservation of Aravallis," Choudhry said.
Since only 3.2% of the area in Haryana was under forest cover, mostly concentrated in the Shivaliks and Aravallis, the Aravalli hills needed to be notified as legal forests so that the green cover remained green forever. Moreover, since the villagers called it Mangar Bani and treated it like a sacred grove, the government should respect their belief, she added.