Tamil Nadu CM declares Cauvery Delta as Protected Special Agriculture Zone
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi Palanisamy’s announcement making the Cauvery Delta region a Protected Special Agriculture Zone (PSAZ) has brought much joy to the delta farmers.
The farmers, however, want this move to be legalised and are urging the chief minister to make it a law in the upcoming budget session of the Tamil Nadu assembly.
The protected zone will include Thanjavur, Tiruvarur, Nagapattinam districts and delta regions of Trichy, Ariyalur, Cuddalore and Pudukkottai.
The chief minister made the announcement in Salem on Sunday. This move has also been welcomed by other leaders as it was a long-standing demand by various farmer groups.
Professor MS Swaminath tweeted, “The Govt of Tamil Nadu has decided to designate selected areas as Protected Agricultural Zone. Over 20 years ago I suggested that like Special Economic Zone, we should introduce SAZ (Special Agriculture Zone) for Kuttanad, Wayanad in Kerala & the Indira Gandhi Canal in Rajasthan.”
“The then Kerala CM Shri A K Antony took interest but moved to the centre. I am happy that Tamil Nadu govt is launching a program of protected areas. We earlier proposed the Grand Anicut (Kallanai) area should be declared a Globally Important Agricultural Heritage System (GIAHS,” he added.
In another tweet, he said, “Areas identified for SAZ status should be given special facilities to ensure that agriculture remains economically viable. The idea of a Protected Agricultural Zone is important to ensure the future of our food & ecological security leading to increased productivity in perpetuity.”
While making the announcement Edappadi Palanisamy said, “We will consult legal experts and research means to do this and make it a law. I would like to state that this government will never allow the introduction of new projects like hydrocarbon in this region.”
This announcement comes weeks after the CM EPS wrote to PM Modi requesting him to revoke the amendment in the Environment Impact Assessment Notification 2006.
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