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Shouldn't EIA apply to Kukke temple 'development' also?

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Environment

The Minister for Housing and Endowment, Sri Krishnaiah Setty (though he has just stepped down, I am not sure the proposal will get shelved) had stated that Shree Kukke Subramanya temple, deep in the middle of dense rain forests, would be developed at a cost of Rs 180 crore, and the department has already issued work order for Rs 60 crore. For the full report in the New Indian Express, click         here

The question that arises is while small shrines in the middle of thick forests (Devare' kaadu) are part of our heritage, if these are to be 'developed' into mega complexes (perhaps modelled on the lines of Tirumala, in AP), like has been proposed for the Shree Kukke Subramanya temple with a massive Rs 180 cr budget, shouldn't Environment Impact Assessment etc apply to these also? The impact is far more severe here.  So, in the first place, shouldn't the pilgrim flow be regulated based on carrying capacity of the region?

Muralidhar Rao

Comments

shamalakittane's picture

Absolutely !

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Going by the proven fact that 'development' means 'business ideas' where a few get to make money., yes ! EIA applies to almost any kind of development.

turning such beautiful pristine temples into commercial complexes only means - more trash and plastics, more vehicular pollution, no peace of mind (but not many go to temples and pray for peace unless its the name of a car !!), unbearable crowd and more road kills.


mrmaulik's picture

    No EIA rules apply to

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No EIA rules apply to Kukke temple 'development' means no honour to rules set by our Government, by the people who are in Government.
                               

its a Shame


 
murali772's picture

A different growth paradigm

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Eighty per cent of Bhutan is forest. All streams and rivers are healthy and living. And this is a result of a conscious policy to protect nature and culture. From the local to the national level, policies are dedicated to “promotion of sustainable socio-economic development, preservation and promotion of culture and conservation of biodiversity in pursuit of a happy society”. In the beautiful valley of Bumthang in central Bhutan, the government plans to set up a gross national happiness centre, and I have been invited to be on its executive council.

For the full text of the essay by the redoubtable Ms Vandana Shiva, in the Asian Age, click here.

Now, when Uttarakhand was carved out of the state of UP, it was supposedly to address the specific growth needs of the hill state, as different from those for the plains. Unfortunately, the various mafia's and lobbies took control, and the rapacious development that followed, has eventually led to the total devastation over the past week. Hopefully, the lessons have been learnt, and a growth paradigm, more on the lines of what Bhutan has adopted, will be pursued in future.

But, the holiest of holy Hindu shrines (comprising the "chaar dhaam") are located in Uttarakhand. As such, even if you regulate the number of tourist arrivals (like Kashmir has done), the problem will be in regulating the number of pilgrim arrivals, with religious fervour ever on the increase. Well, Mecca has some kind of country-wise quota system in place, and perhaps even Kailas-Mansarovar and Amarnath yatra's. May be that will be required for the Chaar Dhaam yatra too. As also for our Kukke kind of temples, located deep within the rain forests.

Muralidhar Rao

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