Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980
(with amendments made in 1988)
I. Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980 with Amendments Made in 1988 An Act to provide for the conservation of forests and for matters connected therewith or ancillary or incidental thereto. Be it enacted by Parliament in the Thirty-first Year of the Republic of India as follows:1. Short title, extent and commencement. (1) (2) (3) 2. This Act may be called the Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980. It extends to the whole of India except the State of Jammu and Kashmir. It shall be deemed to have come into force on the 25th day of October, 1980.
Restriction on the dereservation of forests or use of forest land for non-forest purpose.
Notwithstanding anything contained in any other law for the time being in force in a State, no State Government or other authority shall make, except with the prior approval of the Central Government, any order directing(i) that any reserved forest (within the meaning of the expression "reserved forest" in any law for the time being in force in that State) or any portion thereof, shall cease to be reserved; that any forest land or any portion thereof may be used for any non-forest purpose; that any forest land or any portion thereof may be assigned by way of lease or otherwise to any private person or to any authority, corporation, agency or any other organisation not owned, managed or controlled by Government; that any forest land or any portion thereof may be cleared of trees which have grown naturally in that land or portion, for the purpose of using it for reafforestation.
Explanation - For the porpose of this section, "non-forest purpose" means the breaking up or clearing of any forest land or portion thereof for(a) the cultivation of tea, coffee, spices, rubber, palms, oil-bearing plants, horticultural crops or medicinal plants;
any purpose other than reafforestation;
but does not include any work relating or ancillary to conservation, development and management of forests and wildlife, namely, the establishment of checkposts, fire lines, wireless communications and construction of fencing, bridges and culverts, dams, waterholes, trench marks, boundary marks, pipelines or other like purposes. 3. Constitution of Advisory Committee.
The Central Government may constitute a Committee consisting of such number of persons as h may deem fit to advise that Government with regard to(i) (ii) 3A. the grant of approval. under Section 2; and any other matter connected with the conservation of forests which may be referred to h by the Central Government.
Penalty for contravention of the provisions of the Act. Whoever contravenes or abets the contravention of any of the provisions of Section 2, shall be punishable with simple imprisonment for a period which may extend to fifteen days.
Offences by the Authorities and Government Departments. (1) Where any offence under this Act has been committed (a) by any department of Government, the head of the department; or (b) by any authority, every person who, at the time the offence was committed, was directly in charge of, and was responsible to, the authority for the conduct of the business of the authority as well as the authority; shall be deemed to be guilty of the offence and shall be liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly: Provided that nothing contained in this sub-section shall render the head of the department or any person referred to in clause (b), liable to any punishment if he proves that the offence was committed without his knowledge or that he exercised all due diligence to prevent the commission of such offence. (2) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1), where an offence punishable under the Act has been committed by a department of Government or any authority referred to in clause (b) of sub-section (1) and it is proved that the offence has been committed with the consent or connivance of; or is...
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