Haryana govt plans to modify land preservation law, says Khattar in Gurgaon
Non-forest activities are not allowed in areas under PLPA and it is also important to note that the state has less than 4% of forest cover.gurgaon Updated: Oct 27, 2017 22:05 IST
The Haryana government is mulling to modify the Punjab Land Preservation Act (PLPA) of 1900, said chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar on Friday.
Non-forest activities are not allowed in areas under PLPA and it is also important to note that the state has less than 4% of forest cover.
“We should change laws and acts that do not hold ground now. PLPA in the state should be revised. Most areas which have urban structures cannot fall under PLPA anymore. Change is the need of the hour,” said Khattar while speaking at the inaugural of two-day International Conference on Legal Dimensions of Environment, at Amity Law School of Amity University in Gurgaon.
The agenda of the conference is to discuss awareness about protecting and improving the environment and preventing, controlling and abating environmental pollution.
As Haryana is grappling with poor air and water quality, the government appealed to the residents to come up with innovative ideas and suggestions.
“Today, environment management and conservation of natural resources have become a global issue and call for collective efforts to address these challenges. People should contribute their suggestions for conservation of the environment and other natural resources,” Khattar said.
Talking about modification of the PLPA, he said that the changing old laws will help all stakeholders to get clarity on the forest cover in the state.
At present, in south Haryana, more than 25,000 hectares are identified as forest under sections 4 and 5 of Punjab Land Preservation Act (PLPA) 1900. Around 62,000 hectares have been identified as natural conservation zone (NCZ), while another 12,800 hectares have categorised under the ‘yet to be decided’ category.
This statement of the chief minister worried environmentalists as they were of opinion that any modification to PLPA will create more confusion and pave the way for encroachments in the forest area.
“The state has less than 4% of forest cover, which might get reduced further if the government modifies the existing acts,” Vivek Kamboj, an environment activist, said.