Affidavit filed by MoEF&CC on a notification exempting certain activities from EC, 06/10/2020

  • 06/10/2020

Affidavit filed on behalf of Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change in the matter of Noble M. Paikada Vs Union of India.

The matter relates to the notification issued by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) March 28, 2020 (S.O.1224 E) that exempted certain activities from obtaining prior environmental clearance (EC).

Some of the activities which would not require prior EC are:

1. Extraction of ordinary clay or sand by manual mining by the kumhars (potters) to prepare earthern pots, lamps, toys etc.

2. Extraction of ordinary clay or sand by manual mining by earthern tile makers

3. Removal of sand deposits on agricultural field

4. Extraction of sand and ordinary earth from sources situated in Gram Panchayat

5. Community works like de-silting of village ponds or tanks, construction of village roads, ponds or bunds undertaken in Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment and Guarantee Schemes, other government sponsored schemes and community efforts

6. Traditional occupational work of sand by Vanjara and Oads in Gujarat

7. Activities declared by the state government under legislations or rules as non-mining activity.

Prior to this notification, the MoEF&CC had exempted the above mentioned cases by issuing certain office memorandums and circulars from time to time and the notification clarified the activities exempted from obtaining prior environmental clearance.

The notification in question was issued in public interest and the notification was for the aid of general public. The notification of March 28, 2020 has provided assistance to the kumhars, farmers, Gram Panchayats, Vanjara, Oads of Gujarat and also to all the non-mining activities declared by the state government under legislations or rules.

The report said that the notification had been adjudicated by the Supreme Court and upheld.