What has happened?
The government has eased infrastructure-development restrictions in the Bhagirathi river eco-sensitive zone, a 100-kilometre stretch between Gaumukh and Uttarkashi in Uttarakhand
Char Dham project
The notification makes way for development projects for the marquee Char Dham project. In 2012, the government had severely restricted development works in an area of 4,179 sq.km. in the vicinity of the stretch to protect the region’s ecology
But, in an amended notification made public in April, the Environment Ministry made some relaxations: “No change in land use will be permitted except that strictly limited conversion of such lands may be permitted to meet the local needs including civic amenities and other infrastructure development in larger public interest and national security with the prior approval of State government with due study of environmental impacts