The Forest Advisory Committee (FAC) -- the apex body in the Union Environment Ministry that approves or rejects proposals for diversion of forest land -- examined the proposal in the recent meeting.
The 35.6km-long coastal road project, to be built at an estimated cost of Rs 12,000 crore, was hanging fire for the past five years and opposed by transport activists and environmentalists alike.
Ahluwalia said, "...new government must take on the fact that large infrastructure projects in critical areas have got stuck. "We have started a mechanism that can work. I would hope that the new government will recognise that this is a very crucial area."
Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh today said it was a "difficult" decision to approve the coal blocks in Chhattisgarh after overruling the Forest Advisory Committee but stressed that "border line" case have to be cleared if power capacity addition target has to be met.
Rejecting the recommendations of the Forest Advisory Committee, Environment Ministry today gave its approval to open up Tara, Parsa East and Kante Basan coal-blocks in the Hasdeo-Arand forest region of Chhattisgarh.