• stumble
  • youtube
  • linkedin

Archives for : Gujarat

Protesters against proposed N-power plant in Gujarat fear Central move may accelerate land acquisition

By Our Representative
After a gap of nearly six months, a series of protests seemed to once again shake the sleepy Mithi Virdi village, not very far from Gujarat’s south Saurashtra coast, where the Government of India has proposed a 6000 MW nuclear power plant. Led by Vadodara-based environmental organization Paryavaran Suraksha Samiti (PSS), the protesters feared that recent efforts to water down the new Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013 might only aggravate the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd’s move to acquire land near Mithi Virdi.
In March this year, the gram panchayats of five villages passed a resolution declaring the entire Mithi Virdi-Jasapara region as nuclear free and agricultural zone, saying they would not like to part with the land for the project. The plant is proposed on a 777 hectares of prime agricultural land. “Instead of plugging loopholes of the Act, the Government of India is proposing to remove crucial provisions related to consent and social impact assessment from the law”, a statement jointly issued by PSS and

Bhavnagar Jilla Gram Bachao Samiti said. Mithi Virdi falls in Bhavnagar district.
Sarpanches of four villages – Shaktisinh Gohil of Jaspara, Prithvirajsinh Gohil of Khadpara, Vilasaba Gohil of Mandva, and Samuben Dabhi of Mithi Virdi — participated in the meetings, in which people from the villages likely to be affected by the nuclear plant participated. Following the meetings, the villagers gathered to take a pledge that they wished to “ensure clean air, potable water, fertile lands, nutritious, uncontaminated food and secure life for the future generations”, adding, they will do “all that is possible to save and protect the land, agriculture, agricultural products and seeds.”

The pledge said, “We will stop all industries and nuclear power plants that pose risk to our food, health and environment. We will protest against the genetically modified crops and the resulting contamination of the natural seeds through them. We will continue our consistent struggle against the so-called development policy that contaminate agriculture, land and water while seeking GDP growth. We will strive to save the society from all companies – national and multinationals that seeks profits at any cost.”

The protesters were of the view that efforts were being made to propagate that the area of the nuclear power plant is barren and un-inhabited, but a visit there belied all these assumptions. “It is perhaps from this mistaken presumption that the proposal for a 6000 MW nuclear power plant spread over 777 hectares on this green lush land must have taken place”, the protesters were quoted as saying, adding, “Presently on this 777 hectare of land spread in Jasapara, Mithivirdi, Khadarpar, Mandva stand 50,000 fruit trees. Also, bajra, cotton, groundnut, onions and other crops are sown year round due to irrigation facilities.”

Related posts

Will BJP govt condone discharge of untreated effluents from Gujarat?

Will the Union ministry of forests and environment condone discharge of untreated effluents from Gujarat’s industrial region?

Broken FETP pipeline, polluting nearby areas

By Rohit Prajapati*

For the past fortnight, the pipeline of the Final Effluent Treatment Plant (FETP) of the Narmada Clean Tech Ltd (NCTL) of Ankleshwar is again leaking with its breakage at the Ankleshwar-Amboli road next to Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) camp. The consistent violation of the prescribed norms of the Gujarat Pollution Control Board (GPCB) by the FETP operated by NCTL since its inception is publicly well known. The Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) should clarify which law of the land sanctions the discharge of effluents that do not meet the prescribed norms of the GPCB. Alternatively, it would appear, by allowing the FETP to operate despite inability to perform within legal norms, the NCTL’s continued violation of the environment laws of the nation is being condoned.

The violation of environmental laws is supported by the investigation results of CPCB from 2007 to 2014, and even of NCTL results from 2013 to 2014 (click APPENDIX for investigation results). The NCTL, formerly known as Bharuch Eco Aqua Infrastructure Ltd. (BEAIL), earlier a private company, is now a subsidiary company of Gujarat Industrial Development Corporation (GIDC). The GIDC is a statutory corporation and 100 per cent owned by the Government of Gujarat. The NCTL is also a joint venture of member industries of Ankleshwar, Jhagadia and Panoli industrial estates.

The NCTL claims that the objective is to receive treated industrial effluent from Ankleshwar, Jhagadia and Panoli industrial estates, common effluent treatment plants (CETPs) and to “treat” it at the Final Effluent Treatment Plant (FETP) up to prescribed norms of the GPCB,  and then to convey it through 52.76 km pipeline into the sea. The industries located in Ankleshwar, Panoli and Jhagadia GIDC estates treat their effluent in their Common Effluent Treatment Plant (CETP), and then, after giving further treatment at the FETP at Ankleshwar, discharge the effluent into the sea.  The FETP, from its inception till date, does not work as per the prescribed norms set by the GPCB.

In part due to the FETP’s inability to treat effluent, in July 7, 2007, the GPCB, on the directions from the CPCB, imposed a moratorium on the industrial areas of Ankleshwar, Panoli and Jhagadia. The moratorium is in force even today, since there has been no substantial improvement in the pollution levels even after the implementation of the so-called ‘action plans’ prepared by these estates.

Shockingly and surprisingly, the same plant’s disposal pipeline project was inaugurated by the then Chief Minister of Gujarat Narendra Modi, now Prime Minister of India, on January 25, 2007. By inaugurating this plant, Modi sent out a message to the industries and new investors that compliance with environment laws in the state was not matter of a concern.

Why did Modi inaugurate the FETP pipeline project despite its non-compliance with the GPCB norms? We will never know, because the records were destroyed.

In reply to my RTI application to the chief minister’s office (CMO) dated April 23, 2010 about the inauguration of FETP by Modi, his office responded that the information sought by me is “about the period before date January 25, 2007 and the government’s term was over in December 2007 and after new government came in as per our working method, old records were destroyed so demanded information cannot be made available to you.”

It is difficult to believe that a so-called responsible and publicly accountable office such as the CMO, especially with its emphasis on “transparent and effective public governance”, would destroy official records of public importance, even while Modi continue to be the chief minister in the consecutive term. With its emphasis on ‘information technology’ in governance, the soft copies of the correspondence should be present in the some official data bank, or one would assume that the CMO deliberately withholds or denies information that should be in public realm and the then Chief Minister’s public accountability stands questioned.

Why does the CMO want to hide this information? What is the state policy on destruction of records? Under what rules or laws such critical documents have been, as officially claimed, destroyed?

The pipeline project of the FETP of Ankleshwar was built with tax payers’ money. Out of the total project cost of Rs 131.43 crore, the industries paid only Rs 21.75 crore (about 17 per cent); the rest of the amount (Rs 109 crore) was borne by the Government of India, the Gujarat government and the GIDC – all of which ultimately draw from public money. It is a familiar story: The profits are distributed privately, but the institutional costs and environmental burden are borne by general public. Can we find a better example of privatization of profits and socialization of costs, burdens and hazards? Why does the government charge the cost to tax payers when industries pollute?

The pipeline, 52.97 km which carries the effluent from the NCTL to the sea for discharge regularly, gets broken, and that lead to illegal discharge into Amla Khadi (which at the end meets the Narmada river) as also into the farms lands of the farmers of various villagers. A letter dated January 7, 2011 was sent to the then Chief Minister and concerned state authorities by giving aRepeated complains of the farmers are deliberately ignored.

For the last fortnight, the pipeline is again leaking with its breakage at Ankleshwar-Amboli road, next to CISF camp. These routine phenomena should be dealt the utter seriousness. It necessary to:

1. Stop the effluent discharge from the Final Effluent Treatment Plant (FETP) of Narmada Clean Tech Ltd (NCTL) as it consistently violates the prescribed GPCB norms since its inception; the pipeline leaks effluents due to breakage at Ankleshwar – Amboli road next to CISF camp.

2. File FIR and take all the exemplary legal action against the defaulters.

3. Declare under which law of the land the illegal effluent discharge from the NCTL is allowed when it does not meet the prescribed norms of GPCB.

*Activist, Paryavaran Suraksha Samiti. Based on a letter written to Union forests and environment minister Prakash Javadekar, copies of which were sent to the Central and Gujarat officials

Related posts

#Sundayreading -Gujarat Science Lesson : Stem Cells In Mahabharata, Cars In Veda



350x350_IMAGE30975682(27 Jul) Gujarat’s new compulsory reading list for government primary and secondary students doesn’t just seek to educate students on “facts” about India’s culture, history and geography.

It also has its own take on science, particularly landmark inventions. “.

America wants to take the credit for invention of stem cell research, but the truth is that India’s Dr Balkrishna Ganpat Matapurkar has already got a patent for regenerating body parts.. You would be surprised to know that this research is not new and that Dr Matapurkar was inspired by the Mahabharata.

Kunti had a bright son like the sun itself. When Gandhari, who had not been able to conceive for two years, learnt of this, she underwent an abortion. From her womb a huge mass of flesh came out. (Rishi) Dwaipayan Vyas was called.

He observed this hard mass of flesh and then he preserved it in a cold tank with specific medicines. He then divided the mass of flesh into 100 parts and kept them separately in 100 tanks full of ghee for two years. After two years, 100 Kauravas were born of it. On reading this, he (Matapurkar) realised that stem cell was not his invention. This was found in India thousands of years ago.” – Page 92-93,

Tejomay Bharat “We know that television was invented by a priest from Scotland called John Logie Baird in 1926. But we want to take you to an even older Doordarshan. Indian rishis using their yog vidya would attain divya drishti. There is no doubt that the invention of television goes back to this.

In Mahabharata, Sanjaya sitting inside a palace in Hastinapur and using his divya shakti would give a live telecast of the battle of Mahabharata. to the blind Dhritarashtra”. – Page 64 “What we know today as the motorcar existed during the Vedic period. It was called anashva rath. Usually a rath (chariot) is pulled by horses but an anashva rath means the one that runs without horses or yantra-rath, what is today a motorcar.

The Rig Veda refers to this.” – Page 60 The 125-page book, Tejomay Bharat, that these passages are excerpted from was recently mandated as supplementary reading by the Gujarat government for all government primary and secondary schools.

Published by the Gujarat State School Textbook Board (GSSTB), the book seeks to teach children “facts” about history, science, geography, religion and other “basics”. Tejomay Bharat is to be distributed along with eight books written by Dina Nath Batra, a member of the national executive of Vidya Bharati, the educational wing of the RSS. Batra’s books, translated into Gujarati and published by the GSSTB, have also been mandated as supplementary reading by the state government.

Each of these books carries a customised message from Narendra Modi, as then chief minister, while Batra’s books praise him and the GSSTB. Tejomay Bharat carries a message from Modi praising the GSSTB for republishing the book. The book has . chapters such as Adhyatmik Bharat (spiritual India), Akhand Bharat (undivided India), Vigyanmay Bharat (scientific India), and Samarth Bharat (competent India). The book’s content advisor is Harshad Shah, vice-chancellor of Childrens’ University in Gandhinagar who was Gujarat chairman of Vidya Bharti till 2006.

The review committee includes Ruta Parmar and Rekha Chudasama, both associated with Vidya Bharati. Shah told The Sunday Express, “Tejomay Bharat gives an insight to students about our rich culture, heritage, spiritualism and patriotism. The language has been kept simple, which is apt for students. These are to be given free of cost to all schools, while 5,000 copies priced at Rs 73 have been prepared for those other than students.”

Asked how schools would reconcile the “facts” of Tejomay Bharat with the NCERT syllabus, the Deputy Commissioner, Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan, Ahmedabad region, P Dev Kumar, said, “Being a government servant, I am here to follow and implement government policies. Though we have not been told of any change in the NCERT curriculum for this academic session, if there is any for the next year, we have to wait and watch.” Tejomay Bharat also objects to the country being called India. “We should not demean ourselves by calling our beloved Bharatbhoomi by the shudra (lowly) name ‘India’. What right had the British to change the name of this country?. We should not fall for this conspiracy and forget the soul of our country (Page 53).”

“It is better to die for one’s religion. An alien religion is a source of sorrow,” the book says on Page 118. “Guru Gobind Singh had four sons – Ajit Singh, Juzar Singh, Zoravar Singh and Fateh Singh. King’s men tried hard to convince them, but they courageously replied, ‘Our grandfather Guru Tegh Bahadur gave his head for saving Hindu religion and we will also give our lives but will never leave our religion’.”


Read more here-

Related posts

Gujarat CM Anandiben in a bid to woo RSS, goes Khaki, with Shorts & Warts

Other measures are CCTV cameras in classrooms and penalties when a teacher uses a mobile phone too many times in the class if an outright ban on the devices isn’t feasible.

By DP Bhattacharya, ET Bureau | 26 Jul, 2014,


Other measures are CCTV cameras in classrooms and penalties when a teacher uses a mobile phone too many times in the class if an outright ban on the devices isn’t feasible.


AHMEDABAD: While Narendra Modi kept saffron ideologues at bay for the most part in Gujarat when it came to governance, his successor as chief minister,Anandiben Patel, seems to be going all out to woo the Sangh. And the impact is showing up in the education sector, with the recent move to introduce new texts being one example.

More changes could be on the way. School teachers may be banned from wearing jeans and T-shirts to work as recommended by a panel formed to recommend primary education reforms.

It may also become compulsory for women teachers to wear a salwar kameez or a sari, according to these proposals. Among other measures, the committee wants CCTV cameras in classrooms and penalties when a teacher uses a mobile phone too many times in the class if an outright ban on the devices isn’t feasible.

“We are talking about the most impressionable age group,” said Jagdish Bhavsar, head of the committee, referring to the dress code recommendation. “Agar achhe sanskaar is umar mein nahi milenge to kaise hoga? (If good values can’t be imparted at this age then what will happen?)”

Educationists, opposition cry foul over suggestions

As for mobile phones, Bhavsar said many schools already ask teachers to put their phones away at the beginning of classes.

“Ringing of mobiles distracts students and we have suggested that a principal may take some punitive action against a teacher caught using mobile more than once during school hours,” he said.This comes as the state government recently issued a circular directing primary and secondary schools run by the government to include books written by educational activist Dinanath Batra in the curriculum.

Batra gained prominence recently after the organisation that he heads, Shiksha Bachao Andolan Samiti, forced Penguin to withdraw American historian Wendy Doniger’s book ‘The Hindus: An Alternative History’ on the grounds that it was derogatory in nature.Educationists and the Opposition have criticised the recent developments in Gujarat. Congress spokesperson Manish Doshi said the moves are part of a well-planned strategy.

“This is a part of a larger conspiracy of homogenising education, something that we have been consistently fighting against for a decade now,” Doshi said. He added the incumbent government appears determined to inject strong saffron values in the educational system and that there is a conscious effort by the chief minister to enhance her acceptability within the Sangh through these efforts.

“Recently, RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat was in town and met the vice-chancellors of various universities,” Doshi said. “Now, what would explain such a meeting other than the fact that they are trying to inject their values even in higher education?”Vidyut Joshi, former vice-chancellor of Bhavnagar University and professor emeritus of Nirma University, isn’t surprised by what’s happening.”

Surely there is a steady sort of schooling in Hinduism that is happening in Gujarat,” said Joshi. “But there is nothing new, things like these were happening earlier as well, albeit subtly. As a matter of fact, the selection of vice-chancellors in the state has always been dependent on the political affiliation of the candidate rather than his academic prowess.” He added: “We have seen more pronounced developments of a similar nature in Madhya Pradesh. Now these things are spilling over and we shall see these things across India sooner than later.”


Read mor ehere-

Related posts

Gujarat – Electricity Surplus State ?

During the 2014 Elections, the ‘Gujarat development model’ was sold to the hilt by Narendra Modi and his cronies in the media industry. One of the aspects of this ‘Development Model’ was Gujarat being a surplus electricity state and Modi’s Propaganda machine kept harping on this fact. True, but is that the entire reality? Modi is really good at coining attractive names like Jyoti Gram Etc. He is probably one of the better marketing manager India has produced. But that is where his and Gujarat model’s qualifications end. Lets look at the real story of this ‘electricity surplus state’.

Gujarat’s current electricity needs are about 12,348 megavolts as reported by Times of India (Gujarati). However, the so-called electricity surplus Gujarat has in fact purchased 6812.46 crores worth of electricity from Modi’s pet private companies?

Company Company
Year 2012 (Numbers in Crores)
2013 (Numbers in Crores)
Essar 402.26 156.38
Essar Vadinar 1263 1001
Adani Power 2430.31 3032.81
Gujarat Paguthan 154.01 1115.59
A C B 21.57 227.75
Coastal Gujarat 1278.61
Total 4380.79 6812.46

Above data was tabled in the Gujarat Assembly by none other than Gujarat Urja Vikas Nigam LTD (GUVNL). GUVNL, which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Gujarat State Electricity Board, has the unbroken record of generating profit for last eight years. GUVNL has generated profit of 624 crore in 2011-2012 and 539 crore in 2012-2013 alone. In spite of generating profit for straight eight years, the Company still carries forward a loss of 44256 lakhs and the reason is that GUVNL has to purchase 6812.46 crores worth electricity from private companies. Essentially, the State of Gujarat is making a huge loss to the exchequer by purchasing electricity from all these private companies instead of producing electricity under state owned electricity companies. To cover up this loss, Gujarat charges the highest tax on electricity bills in the country which amounts to approximately 20% of the billed amount resulting in sky high electricity bills.

So while people of Gujarat, through their hard earned money, cover up the loss that State Government incurs by buying electricity from private companies, Narendra Modi used the same model to drum-beat his claims for the topmost post of the country.


Related posts

SC exposes Gujarat Police’s blatant abuse of ‘terror laws’ like POTA and TADA

Gujarat-Police-Desh-Ka-GauravRecently, Gujarat Police is having a very hard time with the Supreme Court. Judgements after judgements in various ‘terror cases’ are shredding apart the integrity of Gujarat Police and putting a big question mark on their capabilities. On July 17, 2014, the Supreme Court, in a landmark judgement, has acquitted all the eleven persons who were convicted and sentenced by a TADA Court in October 2008 for alleged involvement in the ‘twin blasts’ Surat bomb blasts case of 1993. The Supreme Court ruling has come as a shock to the Gujarat government as they looking for enhanced punishment for those in jail.

The eleven persons, including former Congress minister Mohammad Surti have been in jail for 20 years now for a crime that the apex court has found them innocent of. They had been convicted by a TADA court for jail terms ranging from ten to 20 years. The Gujarat police claimed that the genesis of Surat Bomb blast case lay in the demolition of the Babri Masjid on 6th December, 1992, at Ayodhaya which had led to wide-spread communal riots in several parts of the country including Surat. The eleven accused will now be released after twenty long years. The apex court was convinced that it was a misuse of TADA by investing agencies to trap innocent people. The apex court observed how Gujarat Police had failed to follow the mandatory provision of TADA which required approval from DSP. Quoting from the judgement:

Trial and conviction of the appellants for offences with which they were charged is vitiated for breach of the mandatory provisions of Section 20-A (1) of The Terrorist and Disruptive Activities Act (TADA). That provision it was contended required approval of the District Superintendent of Police for recording of any information about the commission of an offence punishable under the said Act. Approval for recording of the information was instead obtained from the Additional Chief Secretary, Home Department, Government of Gujarat who had no power to grant the same so also the purported approval from the Additional Police Commissioner, Surat was of no legal effect

Even otherwise the recovery of the weapons is also not satisfactorily proved by cogent and reliable evidence. Such being the position, we have no manner of doubt left that the conviction of the appellants cannot be sustained.

Not too long back, Supreme Court has passed a similar damning judgement ripping apart Gujarat Police in the 2002 Akshardham terror case. The investigation in Akshardham was conducted by (fake) encounter specialist team of DG Vanzara and GL Singhal. On May 16, 2014, while acquitting all the six accused including three who were sentenced to death in the Akshardham case, the Supreme Court slammed the Gujarat Police for the incompetence with which it conducted the investigation of the Akshardham case. The bench of Justice A.K. Patnaik and Justice V. Gopala Gowda said that there was:

perversity in conducting this case at various stages, right from the investigation level to the granting of sanction by the state government to prosecute the accused persons under POTA, the conviction and awarding of sentence to the accused persons by the Special Court (POTA) and confirmation of the same by the High Court. We, being the apex court cannot afford to sit with folded hands when such gross violation of fundamental rights and basic human rights of the citizens of this country were presented before us.

Before parting with the judgment, we intend to express our anguish about the incompetence with which the investigating agencies conducted the investigation
of the case of such a grievous nature, involving the integrity and security of the Nation. Instead of booking the real culprits responsible for taking so many precious lives, the police caught innocent people and got imposed the grievous charges against them which resulted in their conviction and subsequent sentencing

The acquittal in the Surat blasts case and Akshardham cases show how Gujarat police has abused the so-called ‘terror laws’ like TADA and POTA to trap innocent people over the years. The Congress and its allies had opposed the enactment of POTA in 2002 and the BJP led NDA Government was forced to hold a joint session of the Parliament to get the law passed. All democratic forces had appreciated the efforts of Congress to stop the enactment of a most undemocratic piece of law though it should be remembered that it was Congress who had earlier enacted TADA, which was as bad as POTA. Draconian Laws like TADA and POTA can only be misused, since “terrorism” has never been curbed by “laws”! TADA was grossly misused and thousands of innocent persons, workers, farmers went behind bars under TADA and at that time in 1989, it was BJP, which led the campaign to end TADA.

But after coming to power, the same BJP led NDA enacted POTA and used it against hundreds of innocent Muslims in Gujarat and divided the two communities. In other states like Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu etc, the poor Adivasis, political activists and even people like Viako, who were part of the ruling party were booked under POTA! It was therefore the turn of the Congress to oppose POTA and wear the cloak of democracy.

It must be noted that TADA and POTA both were repealed prospectively and not retrospectively. We from Jan Sangharsh Manch had fought against POTA and demonstrations were held in six cities. We had also written a letter to Sonia Gandhi requesting her to withdraw the law retrospectively but POTA was not withdrawn retrospectively even after repeated protests and requests. This is the reasons why many innocent people are still languishing in jails across the country.


read mor where –

Related posts

Gujarat Model – CM inaugurates a bridge on 12th July- collapses on 18th July – media #Censorship

The corruption that never makes headline!!!
A portion of an approach road, which was constructed alongwith a bridge in Vadodara, caved in due to rains on 18th July 2014
The bridge constructed to connect Manjalpur and Kalali areas, was inaugurated by Chief Minister Anandiben Patel on July 12.
A Mahesana-based private firm had constructed the bridge and approach road with a cost of Rs 13 crore.
Gujarat Model 😀

Related posts

Gujarat’s CM celebrates women’s week while crime against women reach an all time high in Gujarat #Vaw

On July 18, 2014, Gujarat CM Anandiben Patel announced that 1st to 15th August 2014 will be celebrated as women empowerment weeks in Gujarat. Coincidentally, Gujarat State Human Rights Commission (GHRC) also tabled its report for the year 2010-2011 in assembly on the same day. The reason given by Minister of Home, Rajni Patel, for the 3 year delay in placing the GHRC Report before the Gujarat assembly was ‘inadequate manpower’. In reality, the reason for delaying the report was the state election which was held in 2012 and thereafter central election which took place in 2014. One might wonder why?

GHRC report claims that there has been a fourfold increase in violation of women rights in 2010-2011 compared to 2006-2007. In 2010-2011 alone 11,478 crimes against women were registered in Gujarat. Among them were 297 cases of murder, 428 cases of rape, 1394 cases of abduction, 97 attempts to murder, 910 cases of molestation, 534 of abetment to suicide, 270 of causing grievous hurt, 496 of normal injury and 6999 cases of harassment. These are just the reported cases. Also, on Truth of Gujarat, we have earlier seen as to how Gujarat has one of the lowest rates of conviction in crime against women.

A large section of the society, especially the right wingers, will always blame women, their dress code, there life style etc for all the ills of Indian society. I am born and brought up in Ahmedabad, Gujarat and did my graduation from St Xavier’s college in 1972. Those days Miss India Kavita Bhambhani, film actress Parveen Babi, Danseuse and Gujarati film actress Mallika Sarabhai also studied in the same college and were my contemporaries. They were always upto date with fashion trends and wore modern clothes. Even though, I was a studious science student, I also liked to keep up with the concurrent fashion trends. Especially, Saturday used to be like a ‘Fashion Mela’ in the college with both Science and Arts students attending the college at similar time of the day. However, eve teasing was unheard of in Ahmedabad in those days. We could go around the town even after sunset till late hours without any fear. We used to cycle around the town or use the city bus to go to school or college.

My son who completed his schooling as late as in 1999 along with all his classmates also had a very safe childhood. All girls and boys used to travel alone or with friends from tuition classes or school. However, that is not the case in 2014. These days school girls are not sent to school or tuition classes alone and are almost always accompanied by family members. There is a car pool system among parents who can afford the luxury. Question is why has this insecurity gripped parents in Ahmedabad? This is the same city which has been acclaimed to be one of the safest city across the country for many many decades now.

Besides crime against women, there has also been an unprecedented rise in human right violations from 610 in 2006-07 to 10,380 in 2010-2011 according to GSRC report. Why is the law and order situation collapsing by the day in Gujarat?

One of the main reasons is the use of criminal elements by politicians of the state. In Gujarat, Congress encouraged Latif who carried charges of extortion, murder and bootlegging etc. at the time of being encountered by Gujarat Police. Under BJP ruled, we hear names of Raju Chetti, Samir Barot, Bhavin Thakor, Rakesh Thakor, Pankaj Marathi, Tejas Barot etc. They are hand in gloves with police and have the blessing of political leaders. BJP president Amit Shah who was Minister of State for Home in Gujarat also carries murder and extortion charges.

Extreme criminalization of politics is the reality today and doing candle light marches is not going to change the system. Also once the society is criminalized, women and children are the first targets as they are the softest targets in this patriarchal system. Hence, it is time to unite and fight against criminalization of the system by our politicians in Gujarat and the rest of India. Women’s rights and Human rights movements need to be strengthened and the fight has to be taken to the streets with renewed vigour.


Read more here –

Related posts

Press Release- Stop all activities of the proposed “Statue of Unity Project”



  • The shocking and surprising information received by Rohit Prajapati from Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Limited (SSNNL) on 12 July 2014 to the RTI application about the Statue of Unity Project.
  • “સ્ટેચ્યુ ઓફ યુનિટી પ્રોજેકટ” અંગે રોહિત પ્રજાપતિને આરટીઆઇ અરજીમાં સરદાર સરોવર નર્મદા નિગમ લિ. (SSNL) દ્વારા 12 જુલાઇ,2014ના રોજ મળેલ આશ્ચર્ય અને આઘાતજનક હકીકતો.


  આર.ટી.આઈ. હેઠળ માંગેલ માહિતી સરદાર સરોવર નર્મદા નિગમ લિ.ના જવાબો
‘The ‘Statue of Unity Project’ involves construction in the Narmada river bed and proposed reservoir of Garudeshwar Weir, close to sanctuary in eco-sensitive zone, and hence will have serious impacts on the ecology and environment. Hence, the Environment Impact Assessment Report (EIA) and Environment Clearance (EC) are necessary. We want the copy of EIA and EC for the ‘Statue of Unity Project’.

‘સ્ટેચ્યુ ઓફ યુનિટી પ્રોજેકટ’માં નર્મદા નદીની અંદર અને ગરુડેશ્વર ખાતેના સૂચિત વિયર ડેમમાં બાંધકામનો સમાવેશ થાય છે. તે અભયારણ્યની પાસે પર્યાવરણીય સવેદનશીલ ઝોનમાં આવેલ છે અને ઇકોલોજિ અને પર્યાવરણ પર તેની ગભીર અસરો પડશે તેથી તેનો પર્યાવરણીય મૂલ્યાંકન અહેવાલ (EIA) તૈયાર કરવો અને પર્યાવરણીય મજૂરી(EC) મેળવવી જરૂરી છે. અમને સ્ટેચ્યુ ઓફ યુનિટી પ્રોજેકટ’ માટેના EIA અને ECની નકલ આપશો.


Environment Clearance is not required to obtain.

પર્યાવરણીય મજૂરી મેળવવી જરૂરી નથી.



A copy of the report of the comprehensive assessment of the environmental and social impacts of the ‘Statue of Unity Project’ and its contribution to the cumulative impact of all the projects and activities in the area.

‘સ્ટેચ્યુ ઓફ યુનિટી પ્રોજેકટ’ના પર્યાવરણીય અને સામાજિક અસરો અંગેના સર્વગ્રાહી મૂલ્યાંકનના અહેવાલની નકલ અને તેની આ વિસ્તારના તમામ પ્રોજેકટ તેમજ એક્ટિવિટી પરના સર્વગ્રાહી અસરનો અહેવાલ આપશો.


Environment Clearance is not required to obtain hence environmental and social Impact Assessment of the Statue of Unity Project and its contribution to the cumulative impact of all the projects and activities in the area is not carried out.

પર્યાવરણીય મજૂરી મેળવવી જરૂરી નથી તેથી ‘સ્ટેચ્યુ ઓફ યુનિટી પ્રોજેકટ’ના પર્યાવરણીય અને સામાજિક અસરો અંગેના સર્વગ્રાહી મૂલ્યાંકન અહેવાલ અને તેની આ વિસ્તારના તમામ પ્રોજેકટ તેમજ એક્ટિવિટી પરના સર્વગ્રાહી અસરનો અહેવાલ તૈયાર કરવામાં આવ્યો નથી.

Copies of the all the letters written to the concerned authorities & departments and replied received from the concerned authorities & department for the “Statue of Unity Project”.

‘સ્ટેચ્યુ ઓફ યુનિટી પ્રોજેકટ’ માટે સંબંધિત સત્તામંડળો અને ખાતાઓને લખેલ તમામ પત્રો અને તેમના મળેલ જવાબોની નકલ.

As the information sought is not clear, information is not given.

માંગવામાં આવેલ માહિતી સ્પષ્ટ ના હોવાથી આપેલ નથી.




Copies of the all the correspondent with the concerned departments and authorities for foundation stone installation on 31 October 2013 for the project called ‘Statue of Unity’ by the then Chief Minister of Gujarat.

તા. 31 ઓક્ટોબર 2013ના રોજ તે સમયના મુખ્ય મંત્રી દ્વારા ‘સ્ટેચ્યુ ઓફ યુનિટી પ્રોજેકટ’ના ખાત મુહર્ત માટે યોજેલ કાર્યક્રમ સંબંધિત સત્તામંડળો અને ખાતાઓને લખેલ તમામ પત્રો અને તેમના મળેલ જવાબોની નકલ.

Information is NIL.

જવાબ શૂન્ય છે.


Copy of the documents which shows the detail expenditure made under various head for the “Statue of Unity Project” for the 31 October 2013 program and other expenditure till date.

‘સ્ટેચ્યુ ઓફ યુનિટી પ્રોજેકટ’ માટે તા. 31 ઓક્ટોબર 2013ના કાર્યક્રમ તેમજ આજ દિન સુધી અલગ અલગ હેડ હેઠળ કરવામાં આવેલ  ખર્ચની વિગતો દર્શાવતા દસ્તાવેજોની નકલ.


The expenditure incurred under head for the “Statue of Unity” is Rs. 11,383/- for the 31st October 2013 programme (Annexure-1) while other expenditure till date are given as Annexure – II.  Rs. 27,63,24,829/- spent during 2011 to 2014. by ‘Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Rashtriya Ekta Trust’

તા. 31 ઓક્ટોબર 2013ના કાર્યક્રમ માટે   ‘સ્ટેચ્યુ ઓફ યુનિટી પ્રોજેકટ’ના હેડમાં  Rs. 11,383/-નો ખર્ચ કરવામાં આવ્યો છે (Annexure-1) તેમજ આજ સુધી કરવામાં આવેલ ખર્ચAnnexure – II માં છે.  Rs. 27,63,24,829/ સરદાર વલ્લભભાઈ પટેલ રાષ્ટ્રીય એકતા ટ્રસ્ટ’ દ્વારા 2011 થી 2014 દરમ્યાન કરવામાં આવેલ છે.

Copies of minutes of all the meetings in which the decision for the ‘Statue of Unity Project’ was taken.

‘સ્ટેચ્યુ ઓફ યુનિટી પ્રોજેકટ’ અંગેના નિર્ણયો લેવામાં આવ્યા હોય તેવી તમામ મિટિંગોની મિનિટ્સ


Transferred to The PIO and The Secretary (Narmada), Narmada, Water Resources, Water Supply & Kalpsar Department, Gandhinagar.

માહિતી અધિકારી, સેક્રેટરી (નર્મદા), નર્મદા વોટર રિસોર્સ,વોટર સપ્લાય એન્ડ કલ્પસર ડિપાર્ટમેંટને ટ્રાન્સફર કરવામાં આવેલ છે.

Copies of all the decisions, resolutions, notifications and letters issued for the ‘Statue of Unity Project’.

‘સ્ટેચ્યુ ઓફ યુનિટી પ્રોજેકટ’ માટે લેવામાં આવેલ તમામ નિર્ણયો, ઠરાવો, નોટિફિકેશન અને પત્રોની નકલ


Transferred to The PIO and The Secretary (Narmada), Narmada, Water Resources, Water Supply & Kalpsar Department, Gandhinagar

માહિતી અધિકારી, સેક્રેટરી (નર્મદા), નર્મદા વોટર રિસોર્સ,વોટર સપ્લાય એન્ડ કલ્પસર ડિપાર્ટમેંટને ટ્રાન્સફર કરવામાં આવેલ છે.


  • આશ્ચર્ય અને આઘાતની વાત છે કે ‘સ્ટેચ્યુ ઓફ યુનિટી પ્રોજેકટ’ માટે ગુજરાત સરકારે 2014-15 ના બજેટમાં રૂ. 500 કરોડ અને ભારત સરકારે પણ 2014-15 ના બજેટમાં રૂ. 200 કરોડ એવી ધારણાના આધારે ફાળવી દીઘા છે ‘સ્ટેચ્યુ ઓફ યુનિટી પ્રોજેકટ’ માટે સંબંધિત સત્તામંડળ પાસે પર્યાવરણીય મંજૂરી લેવાની જરૂર નથી. –રોહિત પ્રજાપતિ, ગિરીશ પટેલ અને હિમાંશુ ઠક્કર
  • Surprisingly and shockingly, the Government of Gujarat had allocated Rs. 500 crores in the 2014-2015 budget and Government of India also had allocated Rs. 200 crores in the 2014-2015 budget for the ‘Statue of Unity Project’ by presuming that the ‘Statue of Unity Project’ does not requires environment clearance from the concerned authorities. – Rohit Prajapati, Girish Patel & Himanshu Thakkar.
  • શ્રી પ્રકાશ જાવડેકર અને અન્યોને નોટિસ – નર્મદા નદીની અંદર, સરદાર સરોવર બંધથી 3.2 કી.મી. નીચેવાસમાં, શુલ્પાનેશ્વર અભયારણ્ય પાસે આયોજિત ‘સ્ટેચ્યુ ઓફ યુનિટી પ્રોજેકટ’ની વિગતવાર પર્યાવરણીય ચકાસણીની માગણી.
  • ત્યાં સુધી ગુજરાત સરકાર અને સરદાર વલ્લભભાઈ પટેલ રાષ્ટ્રીય એકતા ટ્રસ્ટ’ના સંયુક્ત સાહસ ‘સ્ટેચ્યુ ઓફ યુનિટી પ્રોજેકટ’ને લગતી તમામ ગતિવિધિઓ બંધ કરો. –રોહિત પ્રજાપતિ, ગિરીશ પટેલ અને હિમાંશુ ઠક્કર

Surprisingly, the office of the Chief Minister of Gujarat had no idea about the legality of the ‘Statue of Unity Project’. That is why they have not categorically responded to any of the issues raised in our letter dated 7 November 2013, instead they directed the Principal Secretary of Departments of Forest and Environment as well as the Additional Principal Secretary of Narmada, Water Resources, Water supply and Kalpsar Department of Government of Gujarat to reply to our queries. Till date, we have not received any response from these departments. Having laid the foundation stone for this ambitious project, it was expected from the Chief Minister of Gujarat to be abreast with all the details the ‘Statue of Unity Project’.

આશ્ચર્યજનક રીતે ગુજરાતનાં મુખ્ય મંત્રી કાર્યાલયને ‘સ્ટેચ્યુ ઓફ યુનિટી પ્રોજેકટ’ની કાયદેસરતા અંગે કોઈજ માહિતી નથી. તેથીજ તેમણે અમારા તા. 7 નવેમ્બર 2013 ના પત્રમાં ઊઠવેલા સ્પષ્ટ મુદ્દાઓ અંગે કોઈ જવાબ ના આપતા તેને વન અને પર્યાવરણ ખાતાના પ્રિન્સિપલ સેક્રેટરી અને નર્મદા વોટર રિસોર્સ, વોટર સપ્લાય એન્ડ કલ્પસર ખાતાના એડિશનલ પ્રિન્સિપલ સેક્રેટરીને અમારા પ્રશ્નોનાં જવાબ આપવા માટે મોકલી આપ્યો. આ ખાતાઓ તરફથી અમને આજ દિન સુધી કોઈ જવાબ મળેલ નથી. આ મહત્વકાંક્ષી પ્રોજેક્ટના ખાત મુહર્ત કરનાર ગુજરાતનાં મુખ્ય મંત્રી તેની તમામ મહત્વની વિગતોથી વાકેફ હોય તેવી અપેક્ષા હતી.


For Correspondence: Rohit Prajapati, 37 Patrakar Colony, Tandalja Road, Vadodara 390 020, Gujarat



17 July 2014


Mr. Prakash Javdekar

The Ministry of Environment, Forests & Climate Change, New Delhi – 110 003


Dr V. Rajagopalan, The Secretary

Ministry of Environment, Forests & Climate Change, New Delhi – 110 003


The Chief Minister of Gujarat, Government of Gujarat, Gandhinagar-382 010.


The Chief Secretary, Government of Gujarat, Gandhinagar.


The Additional Chief Secretary, Forest & Environment Department, Gandhinagar.


The Member Secretary, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Rashtriya Ekta Trust


Sub:  To seek detailed environmental scrutiny of project – the ‘Statue of Unity Project’ planned inside Narmada River, 3.2 Kms downstream of Sardar Sarovar Dam and Shoolpaneshwar Sanctuary by a joint venture of Government of Gujarat and ‘Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Rashtriya Ekta Trust’ (SVPRET) and to immediately stop all activities of the proposed “Statue of Unity Project”.

Reference: Our letter dated 7 Nov 2013 & reminder dated 5 Feb 2014.

Dear Sirs / Madam,

This is to once again remind you of our letter dated November 7, 2013 and our reminder dated 5 February 2014 sent to the Secretary of MoEF and copy to  the concerned authorities of Gujarat Government. In these letters we had called your attention to glaring gaps in meeting environmental, social and safeguard norms in the ‘Statue of Unity Project’ planned inside Narmada River, 3.2 kms downstream of Sardar Sarovar Dam and Shoolpaneshwar Sanctuary.

Till date, we have received no response from your office on issue that concerns statutory social and environmental safeguards.

We had sought your authority to stop all activities related to this project in absence of necessary fulfilment of statutory requirements.

Instead, it appears now following some discussion between Government of Gujarat and Union of India, they might have taken the decision that the ‘Statue of Unity Project’ does not require environment clearance from the concerned authorities, which is reflected in recent budget of Government of Gujarat and Union of India.

Surprisingly and shockingly, the Government of Gujarat had allocated Rs. 500 crores in the 2014-2015 budget and Government of India also had allocated Rs. 200 crores in the 2014-2015 budget for the ‘Statue of Unity Project’ by presuming that the ‘Statue of Unity Project’ does not requires environment clearance from the concerned authorities.

Having not received any response from the authorities, we were forced to file RTI applications to find out from the Government of Gujarat about environment safeguards fulfilled for the ‘Statue of Unity Project’. The reply which was expected from the Gujarat Government, instead came from the Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Limited (SSNNL) to our RTI application dated 3 June 2014. Similar RTI application dated 3 June 2014 was sent to office of the Chief Minister of Gujarat and Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Rashtriya Ekta Trust. The PIO of Chief Minister of Gujarat forwarded the application to SSNNL and till date there is no response from the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Rashtriya Ekta Trust.

Surprisingly, the office of the Chief Minister of Gujarat had no idea about the legality of the ‘Statue of Unity Project’. That is why they have not categorically responded to any of the issues raised in our letter dated 7 November 2013, instead they directed the Principal Secretary of Departments of Forest and Environment as well as the Additional Principal Secretary of Narmada, Water Resources, Water supply and Kalpsar Department of Government of Gujarat to reply to our queries. Till date, we have not received any response from these departments. Having laid the foundation stone for this ambitious project, it was expected from the Chief Minister of Gujarat to be abreast with all the details the ‘Statue of Unity Project’.

The Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Rashtriya Ekta Trust kept quite on the issue for the best reasons known to them and the Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Limited which says that “Environment Clearance is not required.” The SSNNL had no idea about our RTI question number 6 (Copies of minutes of all the meetings in which the decision for the ‘Statue of Unity Project’ was taken.) & 7 (Copies of all the decisions, resolutions, notifications and letters issued for the ‘Statue of Unity Project’.) and that is why they might have forwarded RTI to the PIO and the Secretary (Narmada), Narmada, Water Resources, Water Supply & Kalpsar Department, 9th Block, 2nd Floor, Sachivalaya, Gandhinagar. But till date, we have not received any response from the PIO and the Secretary (Narmada), Narmada, Water Resources, Water Supply & Kalpsar Department.

This adds more and more confusion about the ‘Statue of Unity Project’.

Our earlier letters asks for the detailed environmental scrutiny of project called ‘Statue of Unity’ from the Ministry of Environment, Forests & Climate Change but instead ministry had chosen to keep quite on the crucial issue raised by us.

We are once again summarising our objection about the ‘Statue of Unity Project’.

The work on a project that proposes to build the world’s highest statue in the form of ‘Statue of Unity’ near Sardar Sarovar Dam in the river downstream from the dam, just 3.2 km from the Shoolpaneshwar Sanctuary, in eco-sensitive zone and involving massive infrastructure has started work without legally mandatory environment clearance, environment and social impact assessment or any public consultation process.

This is clearly illegal, in violation of the Environment Protection Act, 1986 and EIA notification of September 2006 and a number of NGT and Court orders about such massive kind of construction on the riverbed. On 31 October 2013, the foundation stone was laid for the project amidst huge fanfare and media attention. Tenders have also been floated. Even the work for the Garudeshwar weir, proposed about 12 km downstream of the Sardar Sarovar Dam, began without any social or environmental impact assessment, public consultation and environmental clearance from the Environmental Sub Group (ESG) of Narmada Control Authority’s (NCA).

The website clearly state the purpose of tourism and involvement of the ‘Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Rashtriya Ekta Trust’ (SVPRET) to build ‘Statue of Unity’,  3.2 km downstream of the Sardar Sarovar Dam  inside the Narmada River on an islet called Sadhu Bet.

The website ( says:

“A 13 km. long water body (pond) will create an excellent tourist spot with available infrastructure on both the banks.

The Statue of Unity is planned to be erected in the river bed on downstream of the main dam in the Garudeshwar Weir pond. A permanent standing water pool in and around the Statue of Unity will be created by Garudeshwar Weir, which will enable boating activity around the statue.” (Emphasis added.)

The estimated cost of the project is more than Rs. 2,500/- corers (Rs 2063 crores is the cost of “DESIGN, ENGINEERING, PROCUREMENT CONSTRUCTION, OPERATION AND MAINTENANCE OF THE STATUE OF UNITY D/S of Sardar Sarovar Dam, Village Kevadia Ta. Nandod, District of Narmada Gujarat State, India” as per tender notice, see: ( The Government of Gujarat website( clearly state that “A monument, that will not just be a mute memorial like the rest, but a fully functional, purpose-serving tribute that will boost tourism and facilitate development in the surrounding tribal areas.” and will involve huge infrastructure as described on the official website.

The key issues that beg immediate scrutiny are as follows:

(1)   The project clearly needs environment clearance under the EIA notification of September 2006, but has not applied for or obtained the clearance at any stage.

(2)   The Shoolpaneshwar Sanctuary boundary is touching the Sardar Sarovar Reservoir (as a part of the Environmental Protection measures of the Sardar Sarovar Project, the earlier Dhumkal Sloth Bear Sanctuary was extended to meet the reservoir boundaries and is called Shoolpaneshwar Sanctuary.) Since the statute is only 3.2 kms from the Sardar Sarovar Dam, it is certainly near by Shoolpaneshwar Sanctuary.

(3)   The Project involves construction on the river bed and inside the proposed reservoir, close to sanctuary in eco-sensitive zone, and hence will have serious impacts on the ecology and environment. Hence, and EIA and EC is crucial.

(4)   The project will affect the downstream river, its biodiversity, people and livelihoods and other related aspects.

(5)   A comprehensive assessment of the environmental and social impacts of the ‘Statue of Unity’ and its contribution to the cumulative impact of all the projects and activities in the area has not been done.

(6)   The project also needs public consultation, but none has happened so far.

(7)   During the construction of the Sardar Sarovar dam due to hard rock digging, the seismic area already carries the burden of artificial activity in the bed rock and added load in what is deemed geologically fault line area. Public reports on geotechnical and geological studies on the proposed site have raised issues of structural stability as well as safety. This cannot be taken casually by authorities. The seismic hazard analysis claimed to have been done by the Gujarat Government’s in-house “Institute of Seismological Research” ( or the Geological and Geotechnical investigation commissioned to another government institute WAPCOS cannot be considered credible unless peer reviewed and put in public domain.

In view of the above facts on record, we demand that:

  1. Direct the Government of Gujarat to submit application for environment clearance and till that is obtained, not to do any work related to the project.
  2. Direct the Government of Gujarat to immediately stop planned project called ‘Statue of Unity’ and direct them to stop all other activities related to the ‘Statue of Unity’.
  3. Declare the action – of the foundation stone installation on 31 October 2013 for the project called ‘Statue of Unity’ – of the Chief Minister of Gujarat State as illegal, in violation of the EIA notification of September 2006 and the Environment Protection Act, 1986.

We will look forward to your urgent action and also point wise response.

Yours Sincerely,


Rohit Prajapati

Girish Patel

Himanshu Thakkar


Related posts

Gujarat – Largest hawala scam worth Rs 5,395 crore unearthed

By Vishal Dutta, ET Bureau | 19 Jul, 2014, 07.05PM IST

The entire transaction took place from ICICI Bank’s two branches in Surat, as per the officials, between December-January-February


AHMEDABAD: The Enforcement Directorate has detected Hawala transactions worth Rs 5395 crore in Gujarat and has filed charge-sheets against 79 accused. The illegal route was being used for gold payments and property transactions, investigators said. The entire transaction took place from ICICI Bank’s two branches in Surat, as per the officials, between December-January-February. The official termed it as India’s largest hawala scam.

According to ED officials in Ahmedabad, the investigation started on the basis of ICICI Bank’s police complaint (FIR) in Surat. ED has filed charge sheet against 79 accused on Friday and out of three main accused two are arrested and one is absconding. AfroshHasan Fata and his associate Bilal Haroon Gilani are residents of Surat while the third main accused is Madan Jain, a resident of Mumbai. Afrosh Fata was arrested two months ago, while on Thursday Madan Jain was arrested and also produced before Ahmedabad metropolitan court for further remand.

The modus operandi was to transfer the money send by traders and business houses to overseas via submission of forge documents of diamond imports using the banking channels. Madan Jain opened as many as nine bogus companies and appointed paid directors to these companies. These bogus companies were used for sending money in overseas companies based in Hong Kong and Dubai. ED officials have traced down 17 such foreign companies.

Afrosh Fata used to get 0.1% commission on each transaction that he would execute. ED officials have attached Rs 9 crore worth of assets and bank belonging to Afrosh and his close relatives. ED has slammed section 3 & 4 of Money Laundering Act against the 79 accused.

The role of ICICI Bank officials is also under the scanner of ED officials. “Such a huge amount cannot be transferred without the help of bank insiders” said one ED officials adding that their primary investigation gives sign or evidence of using hawala transaction for the purpose of making gold smuggling payments and properly investments done overseas.


Read more here-

Related posts