There are 190 industries and factories within 10 kilometres of the Sundarbans, according to a report submitted by the state to the High Court, reports UNB.
Among them, a total 24 industries and factories are under red category and the rest are under orange and green category.The state submitted the report the HC bench of Justice Moinul Islam Chowdhury and Justice Md Ashraful on Thursday. The court will pass an order on the report on May 9.
Earlier, on August 24, 2017, the High Court directed the government not to approve any industry within 10 kilometres of the Sundarbans and submit a list of the establishments already built within the 10 kilometres of the mangrove forest to this court within 6 months.
It also issued a rule seeking explanation as to why the approval of industries and factories within 10 km areas of the forest will not be the violation of the gazette notification of the Environment and Forest Ministry issued in 1999 and why those should not be removed.
The Secretaries of the Environment Ministry, Industries Ministry, Land Ministry, Director General of the Department of Environment, Deputy Commissioner of Khulna, Bagerhat, Satkhira, Barguna and police superintendent of Khulna were asked to respond to the rule. On April 4, Sheikh Faridul Islam, president of Save the Sundarbans Foundation, filed a writ petition to relocate the industries and factories set up within 10 kilometres of the Sundarbans.
According to the writ petition, the Environment and Forest Ministry issued a gazette notification on August 30 in 1999 declaring the Sundarbans as a reserved area and its 10 km areas as ecologically critical area but the Environment Department has reportedly issued clearance certificate to 150 industries in the area.