The Haryana pollution control board has issued notices to the shop owners of Sikandarpur marble market for running their businesses on protected forest land. These shops have been constructed on the Aravali ranges in gross violation of the Environment Protection Act 1986, the notices issued on January 9 said. The pollution board has asked the shop owners to respond within seven days.
"You are directed to reply to this show-cause notice within 7 days. Otherwise it will be presumed that you have nothing to say in this regard and action will be taken without further notice and prosecution will be launched against you," the notice said.
The notices came after both the Municipal Corporation of Gurgaon (MCG) and the Haryana Urban Development Corporation (Huda) failed to vacate the protected land in the past seven-eight years.
According to MCG officials, the shop owners were given alternative plots at Sector 34 developed by the Huda in 2005 but many of the shops did not shift and obtained stay from the Punjab and Haryana High Court, alleging irregularities in allotments of Huda plots.
The marble business and construction activities have been going on unabated in the area since 1994, when the district administration had leased out the land to marble dealers for five years. The lease then extended for another five years till 1999. The pollution board's notices have come for the first time in the past two decades.