The Supreme Court on Monday set aside the clearance granted by the standing committee of the National Board for Wildlife (NBWL) for doubling the railway line from Castle Rock in Karnataka to Kulem in Goa. A bench presided by Justice L Nageswara Rao accepted the recommendations of the SC-appointed Central Empowered Committee (CEC) which in its report dated April 23, 2021 said “that it does not find any justification for the track as it “will destroy the fragile ecosystem of the Western Ghats which is an internationally recognised Biodiversity hotspot and also one of the most important wildlife corridor of the country” and that it “will only be marginally enhancing the capacity of the most inefficient section of the railway network passing through ecologically sensitive and biodiversity rich tiger reserve, two wildlife sanctuaries and a national park”.
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