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Supreme Court and Himalayan sustainable development.



  Jun 27, 2024

Supreme Court and Himalayan sustainable development.



Key Points Overview

Why is the Indian Himalayan Region (IHR) important?

The IHR is crucial as India’s water tower and provides valuable ecosystem services. Its economy depends heavily on the health of its natural resources.

What recent Supreme Court judgments are relevant?

• State of Telangana and Others vs Mohd. Abdul Qasim (Died) Per Lrs: Emphasizes an ecocentric view of the environment, recognizing nature’s rights and promoting sustainable development as a fundamental right.

• M.K. Ranjitsinh vs Union of India (2024): Addresses the right to a clean environment and the ability to adapt to climate change, reinforcing that these are integral to the right to life and equality under Articles 14 and 21 of the Constitution.

• Ashok Kumar Raghav vs Union of India and Ors: In this public interest litigation, the Supreme Court asked the central government and the petitioner to propose measures to enable the Court to direct sustainable development that aligns with the carrying capacity of the Himalayan States and towns.

What is an ecocentric approach?

An ecocentric approach views nature as having fundamental rights to exist, thrive, and regenerate. This perspective contrasts with development models that exploit natural resources without regard for ecological balance.

How does unsustainable development impact the IHR?

Unsustainable development, such as excessive hydroelectric projects and road expansions, leads to environmental degradation. Disasters like the 2023 floods in Himachal Pradesh and the Teesta dam breach in Sikkim highlight the adverse effects of such development practices.

What did the Supreme Court rule regarding development and climate change?

In the M.K. Ranjitsinh vs Union of India (2024) case, the Supreme Court underscored that a clean environment and the ability to adapt to climate change are integral to the right to life and equality under Articles 14 and 21 of the Constitution.

What are the recommendations for sustainable development in the IHR?

• Integrate disaster management into development planning.
• Ensure all development plans consider disaster and climate resilience.
• Foster collaboration among policymakers, planners, scientists, and communities.

Conclusion

The Supreme Court’s rulings advocate for a development model in the IHR that respects ecological limits and promotes sustainable practices, ensuring environmental protection and economic prosperity.


SRIRAM’S
 
 


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