http://www.deccanherald.com/content/309243/concern-over-environment-ministrys-no.html Concern over environment ministry’s ‘no’ to radar in Andamans
The recent rejection of a request of the defence ministry by the Union environment ministry to allow setting up of a radar in Narcondum Island in the Andaman Sea raises the question of whether in this country security of the nation is of paramount importance or whether the environmental issues can override it. It becomes all the more important when we see total abdication of issues of environmental abuse by the government.
However, so far the debate has been between environment and industrial growth but now the debate has moved to a more serious issue of environment and national security which is a matter of greater concern.
That there is large scale violation of environment in this country is a known fact. The ministry of environment is either conniving or watching helplessly, whichever way the reader wants to accept it. The mining mafia, supported by political-bureaucratic nexus is indulging in the rape of forests violating all forms of environment laws and hardly any action is being taken against any individual or company. Some activists with conviction have fought cases against the mining mafia and inaction of government and in some cases got favourable judgements.
The pollution control agencies responsible for the welfare of various rivers are a scandal. Yamuna and Ganga River Control Authorities have spent thousands of crores for cleaning up rivers with pollution in them only getting worse. This state of affairs has no justification when we see that in other democratic countries like England where river Thames at London, which was once so polluted that no fish could survive, has now become a pollution free river. Similar is the case with many rivers all over the world. Why is it that we are unable to control such an environment disaster? The simple answer is corruption. Corruption has seeped into the innards of our bureaucratic system and every aspect of bureaucracy needs a deep cleansing.
After having succumbed to all sorts of environmental scams, the ministry of environment in its effort they feel very elated when they recently denied the Indian Navy/Coast Guard to put up radars at Narcondom Island of the Andaman archipelago in the Bay of Bengal. A look at the map of Andaman Islands in the atlas will convince any lay person the critical importance of having a radar in this crucial and isolated island which juts out 160 km of the Andaman archipelago facing Myanmar.