Friday, 28 January 2022

The Lakshadweep Controversy

                        The Lakshadweep Controversy

 Lakshadweep is the largest union territory of India. It is an island close to the coast of Kerala. It is one of the most peaceful places in the country. 

         IN 2017, the government formed an agency called the Island Development Agency to revamp the island and make it a lucrative tourist destination, chaired by the Home Ministry and Convener is the CEO of Niti Aayog.  An IIMP (Integrated island development plan) was formulated on the basis of a report, headed by Justice R V Raveendran, a former judge of Supreme Court. It includes holistic island development plans prepared by the National Centre for Substantial Coastal Management (NCSCM).

              In August, 2020 a matter of indiscriminate cutting of coconut trees in Agatti Islands went to The NGT (National Green Tribunal). Due to falling of tress in a large scale, it led to loss of income to the locals of Lakshadweep. Also large tress at the coastline helps prevent intensity of cyclone, and thus became very crucial on the coastline.

NEW REGULATIONS IN LAKSHADWEEP

There were 4 new regulations adopted in Lakshadweep.  They are:-

  • The Lakshadweep Animal Preservation Regulation, 2021

  • The prevention of Anti- Social Activities Regulation, 2021

  • The Lakshadweep Panchayat Regulation Act, 2021

  • The Lakshadweep Development Authority Regulation, 2021

The Lakshadweep Animal Preservation Regulation, 2021

This seeks to ban the Slaughter of Cows, Calves, Bulls and Buffaloes without a certificate from a competent authority. It prohibits the sale, transport and storage of beef and beef products. The penalties include a jail term up to 1year and a fine of Rs. 10,000. 

             The residents view the rule as a direct infringement of their culture and eating habits. They say it is a violation of the Article 21 which includes right to eat also.


The prevention of Anti- Social Activities Regulation, 2021

It provides the state with powers to detain a person for up to 1 year. It allows detention for anti-social activities from six months to 1 year without legal representation.


The Lakshadweep Panchayat Regulation Act, 2021

Under this draft, the administrator aims to bar people with more than two children from becoming a member of Gram panchayat. For those who already have more than two children, the regulation does not disqualify them provided that they do not have further children after date on which the rule comes into effect. The administration has decided to allow liquor to be served at restaurants and resorts on inhabited islands. It is to be mentioned that only abouyt 7% of the people, consume alcohol, lowest in India and thus the crime rate is low. The locals allege that this will lead to rise in crimes due to consumption of more alcohol.


The Lakshadweep Development Authority Regulation, 2021

It empowers the administrator, to constitute planning and development authorities under it to plan the development of any area indentified as having ‘bad layout or obsolete development’. The authority would be a body corporate with a government appointed by the Chairman, a town planning officer and there will be 3 expert government nominees as well as 2 local authority representatives. If someone interferes in the following development, he/she will be penalized such as an imprisonment.

Conclusion

Thus these regulations created a lot of controversies and hate all around the world calling it a violation of Human rights.





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