At an impromptu press conference in Copenhagen
Daylife/Reuters Pictures used by permission
India’s environment ministry led by Jairam Ramesh is becoming increasingly assertive. The construction of dams, power and steel plants have all been delayed by him and he has spoken out against fuel-guzzling big cars.
Mr Ramesh’s decisions have pitted him against big business and his ministerial colleagues. In recent months he has kicked up a storm with his efforts, which he says are in order to balance development with the preservation of the environment.
In several instances he has blocked major industrial development on environmental grounds, angering those who say such projects would boost India’s economy. Some recent decisions have also been criticised by environmentialists – he gave the go-ahead to a new Mumbai (Bombay) airport and a nuclear power station in Maharashtra state…
For the first time in India’s history, the environment ministry is being seen as proactive and assertive under Mr Ramesh’s stewardship, say his supporters.
“The environment ministry used to be an also-ran ministry before Mr Ramesh took over. He has given the ministry a high profile in face of opposition even from the prime minister’s office,” Outlook magazine editor Vinod Mehta said…
An engineering graduate from the Indian Institute of Technology and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Mr Ramesh, 56, is a technocrat turned politician.
He worked with the World Bank and as an adviser with India’s Planning Commission before joining the ruling Congress party.
RTFA. Lots of interesting anecdotal information, some humorous, some pretty tough on industries accustomed to having their own way.