PANAJI: The Goa Coastal Zone Management Authority (GCZMA) has directed the directorate of panchayats and the directorate of municipal administration to direct village panchayats and municipalities to submit a resolution taken by them on the draft Coastal Zone Management Plan 2011.

Some panchayats in Bardez, Bicholim, Pernem and Tiswadi and municipalities are yet to submit their resolutions to the GCZMA.

The government meanwhile has completed compiling the objections and suggestions to the draft Coastal Zone Management Plan (CZMP) submitted by village panchayats. It will now be placed before the GCZMA to decide on the further course of action.

Objections and suggestions related to khazan lands will be sent to the water resource department (WRD) while objections pertaining to fishing zones will be sent to the fisheries department, an officer said.

Recently, the high court of Bombay at Goa disposed of cases questioning the public hearing conducted by the North Goa collector for finalising the draft CZMP after petitioners agreed to file appropriate proceedings before the National Green Tribunal (NGT) at New Delhi.

In March, the high court had restrained government respondents from proceeding further on the basis of the minutes of the hearing on March 7, 2021, for a period of three weeks or until further orders, whichever was earlier. The court had passed the interim order and observed that the PIL ought to have been filed before the NGT. They were hearing the petitioners as the western zone bench of the tribunal at Pune has not been functional.

The March 7 public hearing had been shunned by people. They called it a farce as the government had restricted the number of registrations citing Covid protocols and each speaker was allotted just five minutes. Amidst angry protests inside and outside the venues, and with a huge posse of police personnel guarding it, the state government claimed to have successfully concluded the hearings. There was utter chaos as hundreds of people came out against the CZMP demanding wider consultation, even as the coastal zone management authority carried out the exercise at Panaji and Margao through the district collectors.

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