The Standing Committee for the National Board for Wildlife (NBWL) chaired by Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar also cleared the expansion project of 800 MW at Kothagudem Thermal Power Station in Telangana.

These were among 53 public utility projects approved in the recent meeting of the NBWL. The NBWL clearance is mandatory as these projects are located near the periphery of wildlife sanctuaries.

According to sources, the NBWL has given clearance to the Neyveli Lignite's 1,000 MW coal-based thermal power project at Tuticorin, which comes within the 10-km periphery of Mullakadu range of forests in Tamil Nadu.

The Tuticorin project, being set up through the subsidiary firm NMDC Tamil Nadu Power Ltd formed in joint venture with TANGEDCO, is in advanced stage of completion. It entailed an investment of Rs 4,910 crore and will help the company achieve over 4,200 MW generation capacity.

The NBWL has also approved the Telangana Power Generation Corporation Ltd's expansion project with 800 MW capacity at the Kothaguden Termal Power Station located at Paloncha near Kinnerasani wildlife sanctuary in Telangana.
Besides power projects, the NBWL has also cleared irrigation projects in Maharasthra. They include Alewadi Irrigation Project and Ar-Kacheri Irrigation Project in Sangrampur in Buldhana district.

Khindsi feeder canal, a pench irrigation project, in Nagpur, Patya minor irrigation project in Amravati and Nardave medium irrigation project in Sindhudurg in the state.
Among other projects, the NBWL has approved the Chennai-Pulicat road project and construction of fish landing center in Tirunelveli district in Tamil Nadu, construction of third railway track between Habibganj and Barkheda passing through Ratapani in Madhya Pradesh.
It has also approved renovation and maintenance of existing canal 'Barna Project' passing through Singori Wildlife Sanctuary as well as construction of 10 roads under the Prime Minister Sadak Yojan connecting Tighira Barota, Basai, Charaidang, Tighagara, Paniya, Padar and Chak Girawar in Madhya Pradesh.

The NBWL has also approved the double track railway line project near Balaram Ambaji Wild Life Sanctuary in Gujarat, two hydrocarbon exploration project at Khusirampara and Babhusaipara in Gumti forest division in Tripura. The projects have been cleared subject to mitigation measures taken to protect the wildlife sanctuaries, sources added.

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