Gujarat High Court issues notice to govt on allotment of village land for windmill projects

The Gujarat High Court issued notice to the state and central governments on a PIL challenging allotment of ‘gauchar’ land (village pastures) in Kutch district to private companies for setting up windmills.

A division bench of Chief Justice R Subhash Reddy and Justice V M Pancholi issued the notice, seeking replies by August 29.

In his petition, Kasam Sidhiq said that environmental impact assessment was not done before giving away these land to private wind-energy firms.

The allotment of gauchar land to private firms will adversely impact the Maldhari community which traditionally rears cattle, the petitioner said.

“The manner in which windmills are being erected leads to serious damage to agriculture activities in the vicinity,” the petition further claimed.

Local panchayats illegally passed resolutions favouring allotment of land to private firms, it claimed.

Also, “reduction of gauchar land leads to a scenario where cattle owners are compelled to let the cattle on roads and in the open which creates public nuisance”, the PIL said.

Source: PTI