Published on: October 6, 2021
FOREST CONSERVATION ACT
What is in news : The Centre has proposed an amendment to the Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980, to liberalise forest laws.
- Proposed by the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC)
- Puts in place stringent norms for forest conservation by increasing penal provisions for offenses
- Maintaining “pristine forests” where no non-forestry activity will be allowed under any circumstances
- Sent all states a copy of the proposed amendments on October 2, seeking their objections and suggestions within 15 days
- Deemed forests listed by state governments up to 1996 will continue to be considered forest land. Land that was acquired by the Railways and the road ministries before 1980, but on which forests came up, will no longer be considered forests.
- The Forest (Conservation) Act (FCA) was promulgated in 1980. Before the 1996 Supreme Court judgement in TN Godavarman Thirumulpad versus Union of India and Others, forest land was only that as was defined by the 1927 Forest Act. But the court included all areas which are recorded as ‘forest’ in any government record, irrespective of ownership, recognition and classification.