Mumbai: The Maharashtra government, on Thursday, made a new appeal to the Union Ministry of Environment and Forest to classify 2,092 villages covering an area of 15,359.49 sq km as an eco-sensitive area (ESA) within the last notice on the Western Ghats. Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray in the video conference with Union Minister of Environment and Forest Prakash Javadekar guaranteed that the Government will take after strict standards of environmental preservation in those regions where hydropower projects, warm control projects, and huge construction projects will be prohibited.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led Government last year had encouraged the Union Ministry of Environment and Forest to classify 2,092 villages as eco-sensitive, but it has not however been done.

The service within the draft notice issued on October 4, 2018, had proposed to announce 2,133 towns in Maharashtra as ESA, which has scenes that have high biological richness, low fragmentation, and low population density and those that will include of protected areas, world heritage sites, and tiger and elephant corridors. However, the State Government made a solid case to prohibit 388 villages and encouraged the ministry to classify 2,092 villages as eco-sensitive.

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The region of the Western Ghats in Maharashtra to be announced secured will decrease from 17,340 sq km to 15,359.40 sq km in the event that the central environment ministry approves the proposal. Thackeray emphasized that once the 2092 villages are reserved as ESA, all-new ‘red’ category or exceedingly contaminating industries and the extension of any existing businesses will be precluded there. He guaranteed Javadekar that the state government will take due activity to watch prohibitory orders.