ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Responsible Activism Needed

One can understand and share Ashish Kothari's palpable angst in "A Hundred Days Closer to Ecological and Social Suicide" (EPW, 27 September 2014).

First, a question of pragmatics: this government is here to stay with a massive majority for fi ve or even 10 years. The conservation agenda has to be taken forward within the constraints, as it was in the previous regime. After all, UPA-II was also keen to support industries, infrastructure development, commerce and other allied areas. And even its environment minister who passionately supported environmentalists and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) was forced to conclude that in the fi nal analysis, some decisions would have to be taken in the broader interests even if they proved to be damaging to these concerns. Merely labelling this approach as surrender to commercial interests may not help the cause of conservation. Instead, suggestions that will acknowledge the economic problems and concerns faced by the decision-makers should be forthcoming.

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