But to solve the problem of procedural delays and confusion, the relevant authorities would need to take proactive steps to eliminate the misconception regarding CRZ by conducting village meetings, group discussions and awareness programs for communities and implementing agencies.

In fact in village meetings, coastal communities have suggested that CRZ clearances for local housing should be brought under the Sakala Act, 2011. This Act also known as the Karnataka Guarantee of Services to Citizen Act, 2011 ensures a citizen the right to obtain documents within a certain time prescribed in the Act and the government department should provide documents within this assigned time.

While the CRZ notification is indeed needed to regulate coastal activities, its implementation so far seems to be heavily inclined to favour the larger projects and industries, who can navigate government routes effectively to wrest the necessary permissions. In the days to come, we hope to bring the CRZ implementing agencies and local communities together to design creative solutions to amend this unfortunate situation.