Video conference process does not allow proper appraisal of projects, say experts
The lockdown reduced the number of clearances accorded by the Environment Ministry by about 45%, a perusal of data suggests.
To a question in the Rajya Sabha on Monday, Minister of State for Environment Babul Supriyo said environmental clearances were accorded to 311 Category ‘A’ projects, or those needing a clearance from the Centre from March 20 to December 31, 2020.
From January 1, 2016 to December 31, 2019, there were 1,757 clearances accorded to similar category A projects. Though a year-wise break-up isn’t available, this works out to an average of 585 projects annually. The lockdown year doesn’t include projects cleared in January and February — the data being immediately unavailable — and so the number of clearances could be higher.
For instance just in January and February this year, 122 projects were granted full clearance.
The time line defined for according the EC is 105 days…