Bhopal: A National Green Tribunal that would
have special courts to try cases related to environment and
forest, would be set up once Parliament gives its nod, Union
Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh said Friday.
"The discussion of setting up National Green Tribunal has
already begun in Parliament and once both the Houses gives
approvals, specialised courts for trying cases under
environment and forest laws will be set up in the country,"
Ramesh told reporters after the seventh convocation of the
Indian Institute of Forest Management (IIFM).
"It will be like circuit-bench of the courts and four
such benches in different regions of the country including
Bhopal will be set up," he said.
The Minister expressed hope that it will become
operational by the end of this year.
Referring to the formation of National Environment
Protection Agency (NEPA), he said he will present a Bill
for the same in Parliament in August and this will take care
of implementation of laws related to environment.
He clarified that after NEPA comes into existence, the
Central and State Pollution Control Boards will focus on
testing aspects while monitoring of environmental laws,
licensing and administrative part would come under the purview
To a question on the division of Environment and Forest
Ministry, he said Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is also of the
opinion that under the ministry separate departments of forest
and wildlife and environment should be created so that both
can focus on their respective fields in a better way.
The Minister also informed that for the first time in
the country the 13th Finance Commission has granted a special
grant of Rs 5,000 crore to the states for the conservation of
forests, adding the states can consider it a `Green Bonus`.
The IIFM report played a crucial role in getting this
Rs 5,000 crore grant, Ramesh said.
As demanded by the Chief Ministers of Madhya Pradesh,
Chhattisgarh, Himachal Pradesh and Orissa among others that
they should get more funds for retaining forest cover, MP has
been provided Rs 490 crore for the conservation of forest and
wildlife, he said.
After Arunachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh got the maximum
allocation for the conservation of its forest and wildlife,
the Minister said.
He also said he has sent a proposal to President Pratibha
Patil that like police, forest officials and employees should
also be awarded with President`s Gallantry Medal on Republic