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Provision in Constitution of India

ARTICLE 21 – Right to Life


42nd amendment in constitution in 1976 by Indian Parliament Article 48A. Protection and improvement of environment and safeguarding of forests and wild life The State shall endeavour to protect and improve the environment and to safeguard the forests and wild life of the country


It shall be the duty of every citizen of India
(g) to protect and improve the natural environment including forests, lakes, rivers and wild life, and to have compassion for living creatures;

Environment Law in India

Year Environmental Legislation
1923 The Boiler Act
1927 The Indian Forest Act
1947 The Mines and Minerals (Regulation and Development) Act
1948 The Factories Act
1957 The Industries (Development and Regulation) Act
1972 Wildlife (Protection) Act
1974 The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Rules
1975 The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Rules
1977 The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Cess Act
1978 The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Cess Rules
1980 Forest (Conservation) Act
1981 The Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution ) Act
1983 The Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution ) Rules
1986 The Environment Protection Act
1986 The Environment (Protection) Rules
1987 Fisheries Act
1989 The Hazardous wastes (Management and Handling ) Rules
1989 The Manufacture , Storage and Import of Hazardous Chemical Rules
1989 Manufacture, Use, Import, Export and Storage of Hazardous Micro-organisms, Genetically Engineered Micr-organisms or Cell Rules
1991 Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) Notification
1991 The Public Liability Insurance Rules
1991 The Public Liability Insurance Act
1994 Environmental (Protection) Rules-"Environmental Clearance"
1995 The National Environmental Tribunal Act
1997 Prohibition on Handling of Azodyes
1997 Amendments in the Environment (Protection) Rules, 1994- "Public Hearing"
1998 National Environmental Appellate Authority Act
1998 Bio-medical Waste (Management and Handling) Rules
1999 Recycled Plastics Manufacture and Usage Rules
2000 Ozone Depleting substance (Regulations and Control) Rules
2000 The Noise Pollution (Regulations and Control) Rules
2000 Manufacture, Storage and Import of Hazardous Chemicals Amendment Rules
2002 Biological Diversity Act
2003 Bio-medical Waste (Management & Handling) (2nd amendment) Rules
2004 National Board for Wildlife Rules
2004 Biological Diversity Rules
2006 Breeding of and Experiments on Animals (Control and Supervision) Rules

Important Supreme Court Case

Supreme Court gives direction as per article 32 of constitution while High Courts give direction as per article 226 in Public Interest Litigations.

Ratlam Municipal Council Vs Verdichand in 1980 Research Foundation for Science Vs Union of India, WP 657/1995 (2003.10.14) on Hazardous waste management in India

M.C. Mehta cases in Ganga & Beas river, Kanpur tanneries, Environment Education

T.N. Godavarman Thirumulkpad Vs Union of India (WP No 202 of 1995) on forest management in India Contempt Petition (civil) 83 of 2005

T. N. Godavarman Thirumulpad Vs Ashok Khot and Anr. DATE OF JUDGMENT: 10/05/2006
Maharashtra Env. Minister was punished for not obeying Supreme Court ruling but not for violation of Forest Laws.

Important Judgement of High Court

P.J. Patel & others Vs State of Gujarat & others SCA 770/1995 in water pollution by chemical industries of Ahmedabad Amlakhadi judgement SCA 4493/1997 for Ankleshwar pollution
A.P. Pollution Control Board Vs Prof. M.V. Nayudu (Retd.) in Consent under Water Act, 1974 Perumatty Grama Panchayat vs State of Kerala W.P.(C) No. 34292/2003 in ground water use by Hindustan Coca Cola Ltd.
Dehradoon Mining case in High Court in mining in ecologically sensitive area


Centre for Social Justice Vs Union of India SCA 8529/1999 in proceeding of Environment Public Hearing

Kharicut canal case
Ex post effecto fine case
Banni Grassland
Tree Cutting in Mehsana District