While India has a strong statutory environmental framework in place there are a number of identifiable gaps. Statutory violations of environmental laws are prosecuted under India’s criminal code. Crowded criminal dockets and the greater procedural protections reduce the effectiveness of enforcement under the criminal law. The legal and regulatory system is inadequate to address the problems associated with past contamination of soil and ground water in the “clean-up technology” field Institutional impetus for the addition of “clean process technologies” and “Waste minimization techniques” has just begun. Action in the field of management, storage and disposal of solid and hazardous waste has started. Exercises on inventorisation of hazardous waste are being carried out. At the state / province level sites are being identified and evaluated for treatment / disposal of hazardous waste. India has yet to address the issue of hazardous air emissions, particularly in so far as the generation of dioxins and other synergistic contaminants is concerned. India presently has no civil penalty for natural resource damage to serve as an economic disincentive to continuing pollution. Fines may, be imposed under the Indian criminal code. However, usually the fines are not set sufficiently high or with adequate promptness to have the desired deterrent effect.
           Institutions Responsible for Environmental Protection: Over the last 20 years an elaborate institutional system has been developed in the country to effect environmental preservation and pollution control. At the helm of the affairs is the Central Ministry of Environment & Forests headed by a Minister. It is the nodal agency in the administrative structure of the Central Government for the planning & promotion and coordination of environmental and forestry programmes. Within the overall framework of its mandate, the main activities of the ministry are conservation and survey of flora and fauna, forests and wildlife, prevention and control of pollution, afforestation and regeneration of degraded areas and protection of the environment.

 Read the above paragraph carefully and write the answers of the following questions in comments section to improve your comprehensive ability.

1) Which factors reduce the effectiveness of enforcement under the criminal law?
2) How the legal & regulatory system is inadequate to address the problems associated with past contamination of soil & ground water?
3) Which are the most important issues that Indian government is ignoring?
4) What is the role of Central Ministry of Environment & Forests in environmental protection?
5) What could be the possible measures to cover up the economic losses due to environmental damage?

Posted by-
Dipti Mahangade,