The National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) has objected to the construction of the Chillarkhal-Laldhang motor road in the buffer zone of Rajaji Tiger Reserve by the Uttarakhand Forest Department, saying it was being built without mandatory no-objection certificates (NOCs). In a letter to Uttarakhand Chief Secretary Utpal Kumar Singh, the NTCA said the state Forest Department's decision to go ahead with the construction of the road was in violation of the Wildlife Act, 1972, and the Forest Conservation Act, 1980.
The construction of the road in the buffer zone of the tiger reserve was ecologically unsustainable, the NTCA stated in the letter. A copy of the NTCA letter to the chief secretary, signed by its Inspector General (Forest) Amit Mallick, dated June 10 is in the possession of PTI.
The letter clearly states that the construction of the road did not have the mandatory clearances from the Government of India and the Standing Committee of the National Board of Wildlife. The NTCA has demanded corrective measures in pursuance of the Wildlife Act, 1972, and the Forest Conservation Act, 1980.
The letter, which paved the way for the building of the road, is signed by the head of the Uttarakhand Forest Force, Jairaj. Additional Chief Secretary Om Prakash said the matter was being looked into.
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