Ennore Creek exists: Fisher protests redrawn ‘fake’ map that denies livelihood

The fisher folk called this India’s biggest water scam and said that they would continue protesting until the map is withdrawn.

The fishing community at Ennore Creek formed a human chain on Wednesday to protest against a map drawn by the Department of Environment that depicts the 6,469 acres of wetland area as a petrochemical plant.

Standing in the Kosasthalai River, the protesting men, women and children called it India’s biggest water scam yet.

Read More »

Advertisements

In Pictures: Jal Satyagraha in Ennore Creek to Save Ennore Creek

In July 2017, the State Coastal Zone Management Authority claimed that the originally approved CRZ map for Ennore declaring the entire region as a “No Development Zone” was replaced by an “updated” map in which the entire Creek is shown as a petrochemical park. Right to Information responses subsequently exposed this map to be fraudulent with no approval from the Central Government.

Demanding the withdrawal of the fraudulent Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) map denying the existence of the Ennore Creek, hundreds of fishermen, women and children today formed a human chain standing inside the Kosasthalai River holding banners that read “This is River, not Land” (இது ஆறு தான், நிலம் இல்லை) Calling the bid to convert 6500 acres of the Ennore wetlands into industrial real estate India’s biggest water scam, the fisherfolk said their fight to save the Ennore Creek is a fight against corruption in high places and lack of accountability in government. “The “Neer Satyagraham” (Jal Satyagraha) is the first direct action to hold the Government accountable.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

All Photos Courtesy of: Steevez Rodriguez / PEP Collective.

PRESS RELEASE – Ennore Fishers Form Human Chain in Creek Against India’s “Biggest Water Scam”

3 January, 2018. CHENNAI — Demanding the withdrawal of the fraudulent Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) map denying the existence of the Ennore Creek, hundreds of fishermen, women and children today formed a human chain standing inside the Kosasthalai River holding banners that read “This is River, not Land” (இது ஆறு தான், நிலம் இல்லை) Calling the bid to convert 6500 acres of the Ennore wetlands into industrial real estate India’s biggest water scam, the fisherfolk said their fight to save the Ennore Creek is a fight against corruption in high places and lack of accountability in government. “The “Neer Satyagraham” (Jal Satyagraha) is the first of our direct actions to hold the Government accountable. We will escalate our protests if the Government refuses to uphold the law and protect our waterbodies,” said D. Selvaraj, a fisher elder and leader from Kattukuppam.

Read More »

Ennore Creek: Made-to-Order High Tide Line

DOWNLOAD MEDIA KIT HERE

Public records available with the Save Ennore Creek Campaign raise serious doubts on whether the Institute of Remote Sensing (IRS), Anna University, has altered the High Tide Line in Ennore Creek to accommodate its client, Kamarajar Port’s proposal for a controversial ‘Free Trade Warehouse Zone’ inside the wetland.

The discrepancy in HTL is evident when IRS’ High Tide Line map prepared for TANGEDCO in 2014-15 is compared with what it has prepared this year for its current client, Kamarajar Port, they said. Kamarajar Port’s expansion project, if approved, will  expose more than 10 lakh people to higher risk of disastrous flooding, including more than 2 lakh people in RK Nagar, Ponneri, Madhavaram and Thiruvotriyur constituencies

Read More »

Union Environment Ministry Finds TANGEDCO Guilty of Blocking Ennore Backwater with Illegal Road

DOWNLOAD MEDIA KIT HERE

 

3 November, 2017. CHENNAI — An inspection report dated 01/11/2017 submitted by the Regional Office of the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change, Nungambakkam, has confirmed that “M/S TANGEDCO has encroached upon and blocked the backwaters of Ennore Creek beneath the Ennore Highway bridge by establishing a approach road no. 2 of 350 m length and 6 m width for the construction of external coal conveyor system without obtaining the prior approval from MoEF&CC, New Delhi and Tamil Nadu Coastal Zone Management Authority (TNCZMA).” The inspection was conducted based on complaints made by fishermen and social activists.

IMG_0746

Read More »

Human Chain – Wont be flooded again

The Save Ennore Creek Campaign organized a human chain on 28th October 2017. This was organized to send a message about the perils of encroaching on wetlands to the government , which may result in heavy floods in the upcomming monsoon in many regions of Chennai. The mismanagement of the government lead to this big problem, by allowing the construction of multiple industrial installations (encroachments) in Ennore. This destroyed the rich ecosystem of the creek and endagers the livelihood of many fishing communitys living in this area.

More than 200 people came to the protest to support the Save Ennore Creek campaign. Here are some pictures of the Human Chain:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Photos and Text : Olaf Pallaske

We Won’t Get Flooded Again நாங்கள் மீண்டும் மூழ்க மாட்டோம்

SIGN PETITION HERE 

இங்கே மனு கையெழுத்திடுங்கள்

Ten Lakh Chennai residents are at higher risk of disastrous flooding because Government of Tamil Nadu has allowed Kamarajar Port to convert 1000 acres of Ennore wetlands into industrial real estate. Chennai has barely recovered from the 2015 floods. Don’t let Chennai get flooded again. Tell the Government to stop encroaching on the Ennore wetlands. 

தமிழ்நாடு அரசு எண்ணூர் ஆற்றில் 1000 ஏக்கர் ஆக்கிரமிப்புக்கு அனுமதி கொடுத்தால்
10 லட்சம் சென்னை குடிவாசிகள் வெள்ளததில் முழுகும் அபாய நிலையில் உள்ளனர். 2015 அம் ஆண்டில் ஏற்பட்ட வெள்ளத்தில்லிருந்து சென்னை மீளவில்லை. சென்னையில் மீண்டும் வெள்ளம் வர அனுமதிக்காதீர். அரசாங்கத்திடம் எண்ணூர் ஆற்றில் நடந்து வரும் ஆக்கிரமிப்பை நிறுத்த சொல்

Read More »

Tamil Nadu govt’s plan may ‘free up wetlands for realty sector’

Is the state government rushing up the Coastal Zone Management Plan (CZMP) to regularize Coastal Regulatory Zone (CRZ) violators?

A Right to Information (RTI) response received by the Coastal Resource Centre reveals that the Government of Tamil Nadu, which delayed the preparation of the state Coastal Zone Management Plan (CZMP), is now attempting to rush through it, which would free up coastal wetlands for real estate.

A new plan, mandated under the CRZ 2011 was to be completed by 2013 by the addition of Land Use Plans (LUP) of coastal communities, Uniform High Tide Line and Low Tide Line for India’s coast and mapping violations of the plans approved in 1996. Six years hence, all of this remains to be completed.

The response, which contained minutes of a high-level meeting, chaired by Environment Secretary on July 6, 2017, notes that the draft CZMP will be uploaded for public consultation by August 15, 2017, a press release from Coastal Resource Centre said.

The Directorate of Environment is required to work with National Centre for Sustainable Coastal Zone Management (NCSCM) to incorporate public comments by end September and conduct public consultations in all coastal districts by October 31 this year.

The finalised CZMPs are to be processed within a month and sent by the state government to the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change by December end this year.

“In April, 2017, CRC had released a report that used three case studies to highlight how NCSCM’s flawed High Tide Line (HTL) demarcation had wrongly identified 900 acres of coastal wetland as land. The same report also highlighted how NCSCM’s HTL effectively regularised encroachments built inside the HTL of coastal water bodies,” the release added.

Ironically, the Directorate of Environment has not identified a single violation till date. Violations identified and reported by citizens have been condoned or complaints ignored, said Pooja Kumar of the Coastal Resource Centre
Between the flawed HTL and the failure to identify offenders encroaching inside water bodies, the entire exercise of drawing up a fresh CZMP will convert an environmental protection regulation into a bonanza for real estate and a disaster for coastal residents.

The original article appeared in Deccan Chronicle on 17th August 2017 – Read it here

State Keen on CZMP by end of year; Activists See Red

Finally, after six years of delay, the State government is pushing hard to frame a Coastal Zone Management Plan (CZMP), which is vital in protecting ecologically sensitive areas and keeping encroachers at bay. But activists say this can be achieved only if CZMP is prepared following sound scientific principles.

Environmental activists claim that the haste shown by the government in having a CZMP is rather suspicious. A Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) notification of 2011 requires all coastal states to identify and act against CRZ violations, and prepare CZMPs. In July 2011, the Directorate of Environment, entrusted with finalising the CZMP, had resolved to identify and publicly report violations, and take action against them. However, till date, not one violation has been identified. Violations identified and reported by citizens have been condoned or complaints ignored, said Pooja Kumar of Coastal Resource Centre, a city-based NGO advocating environment protection.

A CZMP prepared without identifying the current coastal violations will only regularise CRZ violations and free up coastal wetlands for real estate, the activists fear. As per the minutes of a high-level meeting chaired by the Environment Secretary on July 6, the draft CZMP was supposed to be uploaded for public consultation by August 15, but it has not been done yet.

The Directorate of Environment is required to work with National Centre for Sustainable Coastal Zone Management (NCSCM) to incorporate public comments by September end and conduct public consultations in all coastal districts by October 31. The finalised CZMPs are to be processed within a month and sent by the state government to the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change by December 31.

In April, Express had published an exhaustive report on how NCSCM got its High Tide Line demarcation wrong and opened up several wetlands for real estate exploitation. Amidst this, the Union environment ministry has extended the validity of the 1996 Government of India-approved state CZMP till July 2018.

The original story appeared in The New Indian Express on 17th August 2017 – Read it here