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Fishing community threatens protest over relaxed CRZ norms for construction

After the BJP-led Central government relaxed the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) norms, the moved has backfired on the state government. Now, the fishermen community across Mumbai has threatened to down to streets in protest if the state government does not back down.

On April 24, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had met Nipendra Mishra, principal secretary to the Prime Minister after which Fadnavis announced that Centre has relaxed the CRZ norms, for redevelopment along the coastal Mumbai.

Earlier, Chief Minister Fadanavis had told that the government hadn’t received any redevelopment proposal for Mumbai coastal areas.

The fishermen community has already started to criticise the CRZ move. The chairman of Maharashtra Machhimaar Kruti Samiti (MMKS) has reportedly said that, “The easing of CRZ norms for construction will destroy our coast and its natural resources, including marine fish resources. We have demanded that there should be no change in the prevalent CRZ norms without holding consultations with the community. In 2008, the government (the UPA regime) had unilaterally tried to replace the CRZ notification. They were forced to later rescind the measure following countrywide protests by the community.”

Even the apex body of fishermen community, National Fishworkers Forum, has raised objections on these norms. In Mumbai, there are around about 38 koliwadas, which are home to more than 50,000 people. But this new CRZ norms will endanger their home and therefore fishermen community have to come together to oppose the same.

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