Shailesh Nayak Committee - UPSC Notes

The Shailesh Nayak Committee was constituted in 2014 with the mandate of examining the issues of the coastal states and union territories of the country with respect to the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) Notification, 2011. Committees and commissions of important issues are relevant for both the UPSC Prelims and the mains exams.

Shailesh Nayak Committee UPSC Notes:- Download PDF Here

Shailesh Nayak Committee

The Central Government, with the intention of conserving and protecting the long coastal environment of India, issued the first Coastal Regulation Zone notification in 1991. This was subsequently revised in 2011. However, many coastal states and UTs expressed their disapproval of the 2011 rules stating that the revised norms would adversely affect their tourism.

  • In order to examine the issues of the affected states and UTs, and also to examine inconsistencies and errors in the said notification, the Ministry of Environment and Forests (currently, the Ministry of Environment, Forests & Climate Change) constituted this 6-member committee chaired by the then Secretary of the Earth Sciences Ministry, Dr. Shailesh Nayak.
  • The committee submitted its report in 2015 after consultations with all the states concerned.
  • The committee recommended many relaxations to the norms that were established by the 2011 notification.
  • It also recommended that many powers held by the central government with respect to the coastal areas be diluted.
  • The recommendations suggested indicate that the committee wanted to provide a boost to the tourism, real estate and the port construction sectors.

Shailesh Nayak Committee Recommendations

Some of the major recommendations of the committee are discussed below.

  • Reducing the ‘No Development Zone’ (NDZ) as specified in the CRZ.
    • For rural areas with a population density of over 2,161 persons/sq km, this NDZ should be 50m from the High Tide Line (HTL).
    • For other areas, the NDZ should be 200m from the HTL.
  • Allowing housing infrastructure, slum development activities, ports, tourism, harbour and fisheries-related activities in the CRZs.
  • Tourism development activities should be permitted in the NDZs.
  • Devolving powers to the state and UT governments as well as the local governments for development and construction activities, except those that needed environmental clearance.
    • The central government’s role in coastal areas ought to be restricted to regulating environmentally-sensitive areas and environmental clearances.
  • Allowing reclamations of the sea bed in CRZ IV areas (coastal stretches in the Andaman & Nicobar, Lakshadweep and small islands, except those designated as CRZ-I, CRZ-II or CRZ-III) for purposes of tourism, ports, harbour, bridges, national installations related to coastal security, etc.
  • Ecologically sensitive areas (ESAs) in CRZ I should be identified and delineated.
    • CRZ I comprise ecologically sensitive regions such as mangroves, coral reefs, biosphere reserves, bird/turtle nesting grounds, etc.
    • States should prepare coastal zone management plans (CZMPs) for which the committee had provided guidelines.
    • All such ESAs should be notified under the Environment Protection Act, 1986 by the respective state/UT governments.
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