[Reader-list] ‘CRZ norms should not violate State's rights'

T Peter peter.ksmtf at gmail.com
Mon Nov 8 09:58:04 IST 2010

‘CRZ norms should not violate State's rights'


Staff Reporter

KOCHI: Minister for Fisheries S. Sarma said here that the new Coastal
Regulation Zone (CRZ) norms prescribed by the Union government should
not violate the State's rights and that the Union government should
discuss with the stakeholders all the issues involved before these
recommendations are made into a law. The Minister raised this demand
at a meeting of the leaders of the fishermen's unions held at the
Government Guest House here on Saturday, said a press release here.

The Minister also said that a Cabinet meeting on November 10 will
discuss all issues related to the CRZ norms, which will affect the
State as a whole and fishermen in particular, and submit a report to
the Union government.

The Minister said that no special economic zones should be allowed
within the areas that come under Coatal Regulation Zone.

The Minister said that areas within 12 nautical miles off the coast,
which come under the State's rights, should not be brought under CRZ.
Bringing this under CRZ would be a breach of the rights of the State
under the Constitution.

Fishermen reject draft CRZ notification

Staff Reporter
Say it does not protect their right to habitat
KSMTF apprises Union Minister of its stand

‘Conservation of eco-system inadequate'
KOLLAM: The Kerala Swathantra Matsya Thozhilali Federation (KSMTF) has
written to Union Minister for Environment and Forests Jairam Ramesh
stating that the fishing community in the State totally rejected the
Coastal Regulation Zone Notification 2010. The letter was sent to the
Union Minister on November 5.

T. Peter, KSMTF State president, said the notification was rejected
primarily on grounds that it did not protect “the inalienable rights
of the fishing communities to their habitats and did not offer
adequate protection to the coastal eco-system.” He said while the
fishing communities had sought their rights to the coast, the
notification gave only some concessions. They had not sought
concessions, but their right to have settlements on the coast.

The letter said up to 50 metres from the high tide level (HTL) of the
CRZ area should be kept free of non-fishery activities. Houses of
fishermen within that zone can be rehabilitated within the 50-metre to
500-metre zone. All existing houses of the fishing community within
that zone should be regularised.

The letter alleged that the notification violated the fundamental
principles of coastal protection. There was no logic in permitting
activities such as large housing projects, greenfield airports and
power plants on the narrow 500-metre strip from the HTL in the CRZ
area. In fact, the notification would only serve to displace the
fishing communities from the CRZ areas. Activities that require
waterfront and foreshore facilities can destroy the coast over time
through cumulative impacts, Mr. Peter said in the letter.

He said the special dispensation for Kerala in the notification was
essentially to reduce the CRZ from 100 metres to 50 metres for the
backwater islands. While this provision outwardly appeared to be one
that facilitated the construction of houses for the local communities,
it could also facilitate other construction activities for commercial
purposes and in the process throw out the fishing communities.
Therefore, the dispensation should be limited only to the local
fishing communities.

The letter stated that the fishing community was not in favour of the
“integrated management plans” to govern critically vulnerable coastal

The KMSTF called for a draft Bill on the CRZ that protected the
traditional rights and interests of the fishing community and also the
coastal environment.


More information about the reader-list mailing list