“More than 95 per cent projects get environment approval and more than 85 per cent get forest approval. I am trying my best to increase the rejection rate as we were somewhat liberal in the past and overlooked environmental issues,” Ramesh said here on Wednesday.
Nath had complained to the Prime Minister on the delay in 11 key projects of the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) including expansion of a stretch of the NH-7 that passes through Pench tiger reserve in MP that falls within Nath’s Parliamentary constituency, Chhindwara.
The Union environment ministry did not accord the necessary approval as the road was passing through a tiger reserve.After Nath’s complaint, Cabinet Secretary K M Chandras-ekhar met the officials from the surface transport and environment ministries twice in an effort to find out a solution.
“My view on NH-7 has not changed. The alignment proposed through the tiger corridor is unacceptable and rejected by the ministry,” Ramesh said. Putting the NHAI in the dock, Ramesh said its afforestation programme could not match with its record of cutting down the trees.