India needs one more independence : Vandana

sandesh prabhudesai, panaji | 25 May 1997 23:36 IST

Vandana Shiva, country's leading environmental scientist and the Alternate Nobel prize winner, has appealed to wage the second independence movement while celebrating India's 50th independence anniversary.

Large international companies are misusing India's liberalisation policy for extracting our natural resources and the central and the state governments are closely aligning with them at the cost of environmental destruction, she observes.

It's a false notion that the liberalisation and globalisation policy would bring in advanced technology helping our country to develop. On the contrary, the governments are allowing external investment to take away our natural wealth, she points out.

The biggest blunder, says the environmental expert, is the way the central government is trying to scuttle the Supreme Court guidelines on the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) and ban on acquacultural activities within the CRZ.

Introducing the Aquaculture Authority bill in the Parliament is a clear attempt by the legislator to undo a decision by the judiciary on the issue of environmental protection. "It will have serious constitutional implications", she cautions.

The commercial aquaculture, which was the activity limited to investments from transnational corporations till '90s, is now spreading fast among the ministers, MPs and bureaucrats who are investing large amount of money into it.

The prime reason for it, feels Shiva, is the amount of subsidies they get in terms of land, water, infrastructural facilities and even environmental damage while the returns are multifold. Even the World Bank has funded such projects to the tune of $ 425 million, she observes.

As the CRZ guidelines by the Supreme Court created a wall between the people of India and exploitation of capital force, this is the reason, she points out, why NABARD wrote to all the state governments to challenge the Supreme Court decision on aquaculture.

Coastline is among the last bastions of natural resources left in the country which is being destroyed with an unholy alliance between the rulers and the international money coming in. India's future would be bleak in such a situation, observes the leading environmental expert. is now on Telegram & also Youtube. Kindly subscribe for free & remain updated.

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