Eco-Sensitive Zones of National Parks and Sanctuaries – A Saga of State Inaction and Judicial Deference

Two recent Orders (here and here) passed in the Godavarman case regarding identification of ‘Eco Sensitive Zones’ (ESZs) exemplify the complicated and unwieldy development of some aspects of the environmental law due to State’s inaction.

The Government has the power to declare certain areas as ESZs under Section 3(v) of the EPA and Rule 5(viii) and 10 of the EP Rules, which empower it to prohibit or restrict the location of industries or carrying on of processes and activities in areas by taking into consideration their proximity to, inter alia, a sanctuary or wildlife park.

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