Court Notice to Center on Petition Challenging Constitutionality of Amendment to Forest Act

The Supreme Court on Friday sought the Centre’s response on a plea challenging the constitutionality of the recent amendment to the Forest (Conservation) Act. A bench headed by BR Gwai issued notices to the Ministry of Environment and Forests and the Ministry of Law and Justice on the petition. The Supreme Court is hearing a petition filed by retired bureaucrat Ashok Kumar Sharma and others. The petition challenges the constitutionality of the Forests (Conservation) Amendment Act, 2023, saying the new law ignores the country’s ancient forest management structure.

“The Amendment Act of 2023 arbitrarily allows various types of projects and activities in forest land and thereby exempts them from the purview of the Forest Conservation Act,” the petition said. “These projects and activities are vaguely defined in the new law, and will be interpreted as serving commercial interests at the expense of the broader public interest,” it said. The Forests (Conservation) Amendment Bill, 2023 was passed by the Lok Sabha. on July 26 and the Rajya Sabha in August.

It provides for the exemption of land within 100 km of the country’s borders from the scope of conservation laws and permits zoos, safaris and eco-tourism facilities in forest areas. Is. Zoological parks keep animals in captivity on request and safari parks are just large enclosures. It says it cannot be reconciled in any way with wildlife conservation or forestry activities.

abandonment: Prabhasakshi has not edited this news. This news is published by PTI’s oral feed.

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