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Post at: Apr 22 2022

Committee on Chardham Project

Why in News

  • On 11 March 2022 Supreme Court urged to former justice A.K. Sikri to take over as the chairman of the high powered committee (HPC) constituted by it
  • The committee aims to consider the cumulative and independent impact of the Chardham Mahamargh vikas pariyojana (chardham highway Development Project) on the entire Himalayan valley.

About Chardham Project

  • The Foundation stone for the Char Dham road Project was laid by PM Narendra Modi in December 2016.
  • Chardham Pariyojana aims to improve the connectivity to the chardham pilgrimage centre (Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri Yamunotri) in the Himalayas.
  • It is a proposed two lane expressway national highway with a minimum width of 10 meter in the state of Uttarakhand.
  • The Project includes 900 km. national Highway will connect whole of uttarakhand state.
  • Tanakpur - Pithoragarh stretch of National Highway (NH) - 125, a part of the kailash Mansarovar Yatra route.

Environmental concerns regarding the Char Dham Project

  • The unregulated cutting of trees and scooping up land at the base of hills is irreversible damaging the ecosystem
  • The Project passes through dangerously prone to land slides.
  • Other concerns raised including dumping of debris on the slopes.
  • The debris when dumbed on both side of the banks of a river, narrow it which led to intense flooding.

Important Information of High Power Committee

  • The HPC would look after the environmental concerns and other issues related to the Chardham Project as well as the cumulative and independent impact of the Chardham Project - on the entire Himalayan Valley.
  • On December 14 last year, the top court had allowed double lane widening of  the strategic Chardham highway project.
  • They observing that the country's security concerns may change over time and the recent past has thrown serious national security challenges.

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