The Public Accounts Committee, in its fifth report submitted to the Gujarat Legislative Assembly, has pointed out that the Forest and Environment Department misclassified the forest land given to Adani Chemicals in Mundra Port and Special Economic Zones (SEZs). Due to this, the company filed a case against him. The state government underpaid Rs.58.64 crore.
New Delhi: In its fifth report presented to the Gujarat Assembly on Wednesday, the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) has pointed out that the concessions granted by the Department of Forests and Environment to Adani Chemicals in Mundra Port and Special Economic Zones (SEZs). Due to wrong classification of forest land. In Kuch, the company underpaid Rs 58.64 crore to the state government.
According to The Indian Express, the PAC recommended recovery of the full amount from the company within three months and action against the officials concerned for wrongly classifying the land, causing loss to the state government and giving ‘unfair’ benefits to the company. Who is
In its report, the PAC, headed by Congress MLA Panja Vansh, cited an audit report by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) that found the company to have “improper” profits of Rs 58.64 crore. Pointed to which has gone to ground due to misclassification.
According to the PAC report, in connection with a proposal by Adani Chemicals Limited, the central government had in 2004 given in-principle approval for allotment of 1,840 hectares and 168.42 hectares of land respectively in Mundra and Dharab villages in Kuch district. In a judgment dated March 28, 2008, the Supreme Court classified India’s forests into six situational categories and determined its net present value (NPV).
In January 2009, the State Government submitted a new proposed project of M/s Adani to the Central Government for approval and the Center gave in-principle approval in February 2009, the report said.
According to the Supreme Court’s decision to fix the NPV in six categories, Eco Class II (with an NPV of Rs 7.30 lakh per hectare) and Eco Class IV (with an NPV of Rs 4.30 lakh per hectare) in Kutch. with) was classified.
In December 2008, the Conservator of Forests, Bhoj, in his inspection report found that the land in question was swampy and the creek area was overgrown with mangroves, the report said. Despite this, the Deputy Conservator of Forests (Kuch East) received Rs 87.97 crore from the company as NPV of 2008.42 hectares of forest land, keeping the land under Eco Class IV.
The PAC report further stated that the Department of Forests and Environment, in a written reply sent to the committee, said that the transferred land actually falls under Eco Class IV.
The report also referred to the committee meeting held on September 25, 2019, in which a representative of the department denied that the land in question falls under Eco Class II. It also stated that the NPV of the land as Eco Class IV classification was determined as per the Supreme Court’s 2008 judgment which was withdrawn from the company after the Central Government’s approval.
The PAC has recorded, “The Committee is of the view that instead of receiving NPV as per Eco Class II from M/s Adani for the purpose of conversion of forest land for Mundra Port and SEZ, the Department has collected Eco Class II NPV. According to the NPV taken. IV.” With this decision of the department, the government got Rs 58.67 crore less.
It has recommended action against the officer/employee responsible for wrong classification of land, receipt of NPV from the company as per Eco Class II within three months and after such incidents to be intimated to the committee.
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