coastal zone LQF

Coastal Regulation Zones and Economic Development: Is Ecological Dilution the Cost of Progress?

By Debarati Choudhury, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Hyderabad.

Story So Far:

The Coastal Regulation Zone Notification of 2019 has cleared the way for commercialisation and development projects in Mumbai, while racing towards a more vulnerable ecology. The proposal of lifting restrictions from over 6,070 kilometres of the coastline for commercial activities has rung alarms with many. According to the Government, “The proposed CRZ notification 2018 will lead to enhanced activities in the coastal regions thereby promoting economic growth while also respecting the conservation principles of coastal regions.” While this might seem like a win-win situation, environmentalists are wary that this will selectively benefit only a small section, and adversely affect all coastal communities through predictable yet inevitable weather changes and a steep rise in  sea level. (more…)

Megaprojects in India LQF

Development and Environment : Trends and Transformations

By Debokarsho Dutta, Jadavpur University, Kolkata.

The question of development is now widely understood to be multidimensional as opposed to unidimensional as it was for much of history. The contemporary challenges of poverty, disease, terrorism et. al. are intricately linked with themes of development and indices such as the Human Development Index (HDI) represent this nuanced modern view of development as opposed to the previous use of over-simplistic and somewhat misleading indicators such as per capita income or overall GDP rates. (more…)

Migration and Environment in Mumbai

Crumbling under the weight of dreams: Mumbai’s ecology and its migrants

By Priya Singh, Christ University, Bengaluru.

Believed to have been inhabited since the Stone Age, the city of Mumbai houses approximately 12 million people. Mumbai is India’s most populous city and one of the most populous cities in the world. The reason for this is manifold but employment plays a major role in attracting people to this cultural conglomerate of a city. It is also the commercial powerhouse of India. Thousands flock to Mumbai every year to get a taste of the glamorous lifestyle that the city promises. The reality, however, is far from the image that many associate with the city. The city now crumbles under the burdening weight of thousands who come to the city, adding a huge pressure on the infrastructure of the city which is being used at maximum capacity. (more…)

Surrogacy Bill 2019

Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill, 2019: An ambiguous approach to an apparent problem?

By Tanu Singh, Ramjas College, New Delhi.

Surrogacy, a highly controversial issue beset with many ethical, social, and legal dilemmas, has finally met its fate in the light of the new regulation Bill passed by the Indian government. On August 5, Lok Sabha passed the Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill, 2019 which was introduced by the Minister of Health and Family Welfare, Dr. Harsh Vardhan on 15th July and is still up for passage in the Upper House. (more…)

Noise Pollution in India

A Critical Study of Laws on Noise Pollution in India: Prospects and Limitations

By Debokarsho Dutta, Jadavpur University, Kolkata.

Pollution in many ways seems like an inevitable curse of human civilization. With greater emphasis on material structures of progress, focus on the indisputable logic of “urbanization” as a manifestation of that progress and a seemingly perplexing lack of consideration for the immaterial, the spiritual and the metaphysical seems to have brought us to a point where the consequences of pollution appear to have surpassed the limits of acceptability and the only thing left is for us to experience the disastrous consequences of those far-reaching changes for our unfortunate future generations. (more…)

Simultaneous Elections in India

Simultaneous Elections in India: To Be or Not to Be?

By Madalsa Jain, Damodaram Sanjivayya National Law University, Visakhapatnam.

Chaired by Justice B.S. Chauhan, Law Commission of India released its draft report on simultaneous elections on 30th August, 2018, which was submitted to the Law Ministry. The concept of ‘One Nation, One Election’ gave birth to the debate of simultaneous elections. The Commission analyzed the legal and constitutional gray areas with respect to the conduct of simultaneous polls. (more…)

LQF Policy Brief on Noise Pollution

Actions Speak Louder than Words: What is India doing about Noise Pollution?

While determining the environmental policies in India, the issue of noise pollution often takes a backseat, even as cities, towns, animals and humans continue to struggle through ever increasing levels of noise pollution. With the medical and ecological concerns sidelined, we are yet to chalk out concrete policies to curb noise pollution. This Policy Brief tries to put things into perspective and suggests the plausible aspects relating to noise pollution that can be addressed to mitigate the menace it creates. (more…)

UAPA Bill 2019

UAPA Bill, 2019 : Towards a terror free country or a flawed path?

By Tanu Singh, Ramjas College, New Delhi.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah put forward a Bill on 9 July 2019, proposing amendments in the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), 1967. On 24 July the Bill was passed in the Lok Sabha. The Rajya Sabha cleared the Bill with 147 voting in favour and 42 against. UAPA, implemented in 1967, is an Act ‘to provide for the more effective prevention of certain unlawful activities of individuals and associations and for matters connected therewith’. It assigns absolute power to the Central Government, by way of which, if the Centre deems an activity as unlawful then it may, by way of an Official Gazette, declare it so. (more…)

Right to Information

Changes in the RTI Act: Diluting Democracy?

By Priya Singh, Christ University, Bengaluru.

The Parliament recently passed the Right to Information (Amendment) Bill, 2019. This Amendment Bill was proposed to amend the Right to Information Act of 2005. Despite strong opposition protest in the Lok Sabha and an opposition walkout in Rajya Sabha, the Amendment Bill has been ratified by both Houses of the Parliament. The opposition had proposed to refer the Bill to a standing committee that would decide its constitutional validity, however, this was not assented to by the majority.  (more…)

Real Estate Growth and Ecological Crisis: The Story of Delhi

This Research Brief outlines the ecological consequences of unorganized urban settlements along with the existing and upcoming real estate development projects in the National Capital Territory (NCT) of Delhi.

To provide a holistic view of the status quo, this Brief takes into account the challenges of vehicular congestion, green cover, urban waste management, and urban floods in the light of the Master Plan 2021 for Delhi. It serves as a master document to get a comprehensive overview of Delhi’s ecological state of affairs at a time when the real estate impacts every aspect of its ecological makeup. (more…)