DEHRADUN: Uttarakhand Biodiversity Board is going to charge Rs 12 crore from Baba Ramdev’s firms which include Rs 10 crore from Patanjali Yogpeeth and Rs 2 crore from its subsidiary Divya Pharmacy for using natural resources of the state for their products. Under The Biodiversity Act, the industries using natural resources for their commercial venture has to either give 5% of the cost of the resources they are using or 0.1 to 0.5% as per their turnover to the Board annually under Access and Benefit Sharing (ABS) clause of the Act. Chairman of the Board, Rakesh Shah told TOI, "There are some 3000 industries in the state. We have issued notice to some 600 so far to share their benefit with the board under ABS section of the Act. However since the companies never shared their benefit earlier so they are not forthcoming in doing so now. The big giants come up with seasoned lawyers of high court and Supreme Court who argue to minimize the cost under ABS." The finances generated from ABS are passed on by the board to the Biodiversity Management Committee (BMC) formed by local bodies at village level for the conservation and management of biological resources in their gram sabha. The Board has to form 8000 BMC across the state, out of which 850 have been constituted so far. With the finances generated from these companies in future, the conservation of bio-resources will be managed by these 8000 BMC through this profit sharing According to Dhananjay Prasad, deputy director of board, though the Act came into being in 2002, the guidelines were issued only in 2014. With so much investigation, data and lengthy discussion involved in finalizing the ABS amount, the process take lot of time. As the turnover of the company or their purchase of the bio resources increases, the ABS would also rise simultaneously. "This month , we will be able to charge Patanjali Yogpeeth of Baba Ramdev Haridwar Rs 10 crore and its subsidiary Divya Pharmacy of Rs two crore. As Ramdev has declared that he has set a target to take his turnover to Rs 5000 crore in one year, so ABS would also increase exponentially," said Prasad. Dabar India will also start sharing Rs 16 lakh annually from this month. Other companies, Cooperative Drug factory has begun giving Board ABS amount of Rs 3.82 lakh, Habib Cosmetics Rs 3.48 lakh, Geeta Bhawan Ayurved Bhawan Rs 2.27 lakh and Hans Ayurved Vikas Sansthan 16, 594. Couple of other companies are also sharing petty amount as per their small turnover with UBB.
Source: Times of India, 7th Sep., 2016